During the weekend I was lamenting with some companions that the absence of nineteenth century Russian Literature taught in primary schools meant that there was a distinct lack of childish nicknames given based around allusions to Russian classics. I have decided to redress this, starting with an abridged version of Tolstoy’s masterpiece Anna Karenina.
Anna Karenina for Children
This is Anna. Anna was pretty and smart. She liked reading, writing and riding horses.
She was married to Karenin. He was a government official.
This is Vronsky. Isn’t he dashing?
Vronsky liked horse-riding too. This is his horse, Frou-Frou.
Vronsky was supposed to fall in love with Kitty, but he liked Anna better.
Anna liked Vronsky too, but she was married.
Karenin didn’t like Anna playing with Vronsky, but then Anna had a baby so Karenin said she could she could have a divorce if she really wanted.
But Anna and Vronsky went to Italy instead.
When they returned to Russia, everybody was mean to Anna. Then she thought Vronsky didn’t like her anymore either.
One day, Anna went to the train station...
...but she didn’t watch out for the train. Poor Anna.
But at least Levin got over his bad mood in the end, so the story’s not a total downer.