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When you read it again you notice all the foreshadowing. It's amazing really.
I think he blames the society and it seesm that If it had been found out that Instetten knew and didn't duel and send away his wife, the legal consequences would have been severe. He had a choice of not telling but after he told his second, there was no going back. I think his second mentioned this but I didn't understand it at first.
I thought it was even more tragic because there was no gradual downfall. When it hit Effi, she was over the worst, she was quite well and glad to move to Berlin.


I agree with Caroline that you can look back and see a lot of little clues which tell you what will happen later. It's a very well-constructed novel (although, as Eibhlin points out, the breaking into the draw to get the letters is a weak point).


Poor Effi. She's on TBR list now though because of you :)


Caroline--I think the second read is going to be much better (and clearer) than the first. I am already looking forward to it. I guess once he admitted what happened he could only move forward with the duel. Dueling is sort of fascinating--it must have been a huge honor thing back then--I should read more about it. Effi had moved on with her life--I wonder if she was happy--at least contented. What a thing to come out of your past and haunt you!
Tony--I really enjoyed the novel though I am sure I didn't read nearly close enough and expect now that I know what to look for it will be much better the second time around. All the best books work that way it seems. It is very tightly written, isn't it.
Stefanie--I'm so glad you have added it to your list. It is very well worth reading. I've influenced you in a good way! :)


I am looking forward to a second reading as well, perhaps a different edition with an introduction may help me as well (I read a Dutch edition). I do like seeing everyone else's posts. I like the idea of Effi's tragic ending as less dramatic somehow, her retaining some of her self worth. I think you're right, yet it was tragic because I somehow felt with Effi, instead of the other tragic heroines, there was more of a chance there of a better ending for her.


Iris--I was lucky as mine had a really good introduction and I admit that I did dip into it (I usually refrain from intros until I have read the book) as I needed some clarification as I was reading. So I did sort of know the ending and wasn't really surprised. It was a tragic ending because it was so unnecessary it seemed. One small misstep, and one that she feels sorry for, and she is still shunned by family and husband. It seems horribly unfair. But I did like Effi in the end--she seemed so young at first, but it was a harsh reality she ended up with.


Stefanie's comment made me laugh! And yes, I do believe Effi will make it onto my tbr again one of these days, only I'll have to get hold of an English translation as I only have the book in German but forgot all the vocabulary long ago! Sigh.


Litlove--Poor Effi indeed. I'm glad I didn't turn anyone off reading the book since it is so sad! :) I studied German in college and even lived in Austria for a year but sadly everything I learned has pretty much faded away now. I have thought of taking more German language courses as a refresher, but can't seem to motivate myself. I'm envious of people who can read more than one language!

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