Book Review: Kissing Tolstoy

Title: Kissing Tolstoy
Author: Penny Reid
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format: Audiobook
Source: Scribd
Rating: 3/5

When you think about professor-student relationships, a steamy romance with the nastiest smut comes to mind. yea? This book has none of that smut we live for. Rather what we have is an ode to Russian literature and frankly, it feels like the author is trying to show off her impressive knowledge of Russian literature.

The female main character is obnoxious and the male main character even stranger, I cannot deal with. Now, it might seem like a bit of an exaggeration to say I did not feel connected to any of the characters but admitting to only date “broken” women is a hard limit for me. Sorry, not sorry.

There is like one sex scene and the build-up would have made it worth it if it wasn’t riddled with the philosophy of people that died ages ago. Random monologues on the essentials of blah blah blah made me zone out multiple times while listening and I wanted to stop reading halfway.

As someone that suffers from a serious case of second-hand embarrassment, this book had me pausing and gasping for air because of how obnoxious and clumsy the female main character was. It almost felt like the author took “quirky” and ran wild with the concept.

This is the first in a series and I don’t think I will read the second one. Did I mention it is very short? I recently branched into listening to audiobooks and I was starting off with shorter ones. I picked this solely because of its length and I had read another title by Penny Reid in the past.

All in all, this is not a bad book. It’s perfect if you are curious about Russian philosophers or your idea of a professor-student relationship is sitting in front of a fireplace and amazing each other with random facts about Russian literature.


Hello! My name is Preye and I am a 2nd-year law student at the University of Porthacourt, Rivers State, Nigeria. I love writing, reading and Korean dramas. When I am doing neither of these things, I can be found manifesting my inner Tina Snow on the dance floor.

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