I have recently read Anna Karenina and itís a great book indeed. I think Leo Tolstoy is a pioneer as he has laid the foundations of interior monologue. The way he takes a reader deep down into the mind of a character is splendid, specially the thoughts of Anna before committing suicide and in the last chapters where Levin seeks the path to Christianity.
I also want to say a few words about the character Konstantin Levin. He is sincere, sensitive, agonistic yet a true Christian. His naÔve and honest nature stands in high contrast with complex and superficial higher society of Russia, he is a person who leads a simple life and loves to spend his time around the ordinary peasants of his country. Tolstoy has lent him the traits of a philosopher and a thinker; in fact he carries within him the thoughts of Tolstoy himself.