Crime and Punishment

Front Cover
Penguin Publishing Group, Jul 5, 2018 - Crime - 720 pages
Fyodor Dostoyevsky's seminal classic, now back in a beautiful hardcover edition designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith. Nominated as one of America's best-loved novels by PBS's The Great American Read

Raskolnikov, a destitute and desperate former student, wanders through the slums of St Petersburg and commits a random murder without remorse or regret. He imagines himself to be a great man, a Napoleon: acting for a higher purpose beyond conventional moral law. But as he embarks on a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a suspicious police investigator, Raskolnikov is pursued by the growing voice of his conscience and finds the noose of his own guilt tightening around his neck. Only Sonya, a downtrodden prostitute, can offer the chance of redemption.


This vivid translation by David McDuff has been acclaimed as the most accessible version of Dostoyevsky's great novel, rendering its dialogue with a unique force and naturalism. This edition of Crime and Punishment also includes a new chronology of Dostoyevsky's life and work.

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About the author (2018)

Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky was born in Moscow in 1821. His debut, the epistolary novella Poor Folk(1846), made his name. In 1849 he was arrested for involvement with the politically subversive 'Petrashevsky circle' and until 1854 he lived in a convict prison in Omsk, Siberia. From this experience came The House of the Dead (1860-2). In 1860 he began the journal Vremya(Time). Already married, he fell in love with one of his contributors, Appollinaria Suslova, eighteen years his junior, and developed a ruinous passion for roulette. After the death of his first wife, Maria, in 1864, Dostoyevsky completed Notes from Undergroundand began work towards Crime and Punishment(1866). The major novels of his late period are The Idiot(1868), Demons(1871-2) and The Brothers Karamazov(1879-80). He died in 1881.

David McDuff's translations for Penguin Classics include Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment, The Brothers Karamazovand The Idiot, and Babel's short stories.

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