Monday, October 17, 2016

Master and Margaritalong III

Here's the third installment of Reading Rambo's readalong of The Master and Margarita, by Michail Bulgakov.  I'm a bit late with my reading this week, so I probably won't be able to do a really long post--we'll see.  Last time I mysteriously skipped a chapter and then read too far.  Weird.  So I went back and read:

In another Pilate novel chapter, the disciple Matthew runs to the desert as Yeshua is crucified.  He decides to kill his master to spare him pain, but by the time he arrives, the executioner has already stabbed all three.

In Moscow, Berlioz' cousin has arrived in town to try to get hold of the apartment, but the demons whap him with a roast chicken and throw him out.  The barman of the ill-starred theater shows up to ask after Woland, who tells him that he'll die of liver cancer within the year, so the poor man panics and runs off to the nearest doctor.  He pays with magic rubles, the demons visit the doctor, and he ends up with leeches all over his head.


Now we move on to Margarita.  She is quite a wealthy and lucky woman, married to a nice man with a giant apartment and plenty of money, but she doesn't love her husband and is miserable.  Meeting the master is the event that brings her happiness, so when he disappears, she is ready to die until she meets Azazello.  (He talks to her as she happens to observe Berlioz' funeral procession; the gossip is that his head disappeared.)  Azazello first invites her to meet a distinguished foreigner, and she thinks he's accosting her, but when he tells her that the master is still alive, she's ready to do anything to find out more.  He gives her a pot of ointment to apply that night.

Margarita with her flowers
When Margarita applies the cream all over herself that night, she becomes younger and more beautiful, and is able to fly.  She feels wonderful, and flies off into the night, naked and invisible, telling her maid to follow suit.  She finds Dramlit House--just like Massolit only for drama, and that's where the critic lives who destroyed the master's life.  She finds his apartment, but he's gone at the funeral, so she smashes everything she can see and flies away, meeting her maid on the way. (She is flying on a hog, who is the neighbor, transformed by the magic cream.)  They fly out to the country, meet a witch's meeting, and then Margarita is driven back into Moscow by demons.  She's having a wonderful time.

Azazello takes Margarita to the apartment, which has turned into a massive house of luxury.  Koroviev explains that Woland is to hold a great ball, and needs Margarita to play hostess.  She happily agrees, and goes in to meet Woland, who is holding court in bed, with Hella rubbing ointment into his sore knee (the devil has a limp, you know).  Margarita hits it off wonderfully with the whole crew, and it's time for the ball.


Well, there's lots more chaos in Moscow, but we also move on to Margarita's storyline and her perfect willingness to fall in with Woland's plans--at first for the sake of the master (actually just for the hope of news of him, not in hopes of actually helping him) and then because she enjoys the whole thing so much.  I wonder what will happen to her?

Next week: chapters 23-26!

5 comments:

Chris bookarama said...

I love that Margarita is enjoying herself. Sounds like she needed it!

Red said...

I love how Margarita immediately dived into this whole thing. What's that, weird stranger, rub cream all over myself, yell "I'm invisible" and I'll be able to fly? NO PROBLEM!

Gin Jenny said...

Do you hate the Jesus chapters as much as I do? I HATE THEM SO MUCH, I am deeply angry at the Master for writing such a crap book and making me read chapters from it, like maybe the critics disliked your book BECAUSE IT WAS BAD, dude. Less of that, more of Margarita becoming Evil, please.

Jean said...

They are certainly not my favorite part. I kind of think I could have done without them.

Reading Rambo said...

Oooh I love that picture of Margarita. If this book has done anything, it's inspired some awesome fanart.