This play was an enjoyable read for me. It is about a once aristocratic family, now impoverished and forced to sell everything, including their beautiful cherry orchard, that seemed to be the main thing they cared about, the reason of their pride. Even though they were about to lose everything they owned, they were in some sort of denial because they didn’t (or couldn’t) do anything to solve that situation. And while this family was in decline, a new kind of rich people arose: the once serfs were making their own money and gaining their place in society. “New money”, like Rose DeWitt’s stuck-up mother would say. Rich people in decline trying to save their social position can be really unpleasant. They are willing to do anything to maintain their status. However, this family just stayed there, doing nothing… Some friends gave them possible solutions for their problem, and they did nothing.
The characters are likable, each one in their own way. The main one is Lyubov, a widowed landowner that also lost a son. She’s a mixture of different kind of emotions and apparently unwilling to let go the past (something I can relate to, very much). Her brother, Leonid, adds a comedy element that I always enjoy. This play can be funny, witty and also heartbreaking. It has several things to consider that makes it an interesting book to read.
* Photo credit: Book cover via Goodreads.