Generally there are two ways I become intrigued by a book. Either I'm hooked immediately or I determine to devote several hours in a row to reading it, and in doing so become absorbed in the story. The latter is true in this case, and Levin had a great deal to do with it. He's a nerd and I do love nerds (well, it takes one to know one). I long for the Levin storyline and tolerate everyone else. Levin is such a sweet character. He's a bit naive and quite capricious in moments of fervent passion, and it’s clear Tolstoy wants the reader to love him. Here's a taste of Konstantin Dmitrievitch Levin, "... a just idea cannot but be fruitful."
Aww. That quote is from Part 3 Chapter 30, and I'll wager a few rubles that he changes his mind in the next few hundred pages. Levin is good and kind and decent, and since it’s a Russian novel I fear the decent people shall meet tragic ends. Every time the story gets back to him I love him more, yet I suspect he shall die a violent death--perhaps by scythe at the hand of a peasant. (It would certainly be a lovely bit of literary symmetry if he did.)
I'm not terribly concerned about Anna Karenina. I dislike her, her husband and her lover. Whine whine moan moan poor little old me whatever shall I do? Dude, shut up! That's what you should do.