"The Queen of Spades" is the best known and probably the best of all Russian short stories. It confronts the great riches of a few and the impoverishment of the many in the form of the assistant to the fabulously rich and old Countess; Hermann, who seeks great wealth through any means; and the countess's knowledge of how to win one's fortune on three cards. The denouement is worthy of being considered one of the finest in literature. As a great critic said, Gogol's "The Overcoat" may have been the great work that inspired Russian authors such as Fyodor Dostoevsky, but the "Queen of Spades" inspired all of literature.
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The stilted performance ruined the story for me.
- H. Flowers