One of the most “strong” books I read this summer was the novel by B. Polevoy “The Story of a Real Man.” This work is based on real events from the life of the Soviet pilot Alexei Maresiev.
During one of the battles, the hero was shot down by an enemy aircraft. When he woke up in the woods, he was seriously wounded, he did not give up, but began the hard way “to his.”
The main difficulties of Alexei were his wounded legs and hunger. On the seventh day the hero could only crawl, because his legs refused him. Meresjev was pursued by wild animals, and also he was afraid to stumble upon the Germans – this would mean a sure death for him.
The hero eats plants and berries, which he found on the way. And one day he ate a freshly killed hedgehog: “with pleasure, he began to tear his teeth with a warm, gray, sinewy meat, tightly adhering to the bones.”
In the hard way, Alexis was supported by memories of the house,
about the mother and the girl she loved. He also thought about the Germans, who can destroy all this: “Do not let them go, do not let them go on! Fight, fight with them while there are forces.”
And finally, almost despairing, the hero met ours! Old Mikhail brought the pilot to his house, but the whole village nursed him. People carried everything that they had – dry berries, milk, chicken. They did not regret the latter, if only the Russian soldier recovered.
Grandfather Mihaila treated Alexei as his son. He exerted all his strength so that Meresyev rose to his feet. And it was he who told the friend of the hero, the pilot Degtyarenko, about his “trophy”.
In the recovery of the hero, many people took part – Degtyarenko, a professor at the hospital, a commissar. Thanks to them, the hero, despite amputated legs, found the strength to live.
The most difficult episode of the story for me is a description of the hero’s condition before the operation. Meresiev could not reconcile himself to the fact that he would become an invalid. But a strict and severe
professor said that it was inevitable. Alexei prepared himself for the operation for a long time. But when they announced that they would cut, he “sobbed quietly and strongly, hiding in the pillow, all shaking and twitching. Everyone was creepy.”
After the operation, everyone supported Alexei, and especially the Commissioner – his neighbor in the ward. He handed the pilot letters to their native regiment, showed him that he had to live in spite of everything. And he himself, always cheerful and cheerful, died in terrible agony. Very helped Alexei and Lieutenant Naumenko, to whom the hero came after the hospital. In many ways, thanks to this man, Meresyev started flying again.
There are many goodies in the story, but there are also negative ones. One of them is the wicked and cynical Struchkov. Meresyev did not get along with him at once. The major disrespected people, especially to the nurse Klavdia Ivanovna.
Most of all in the story I liked the episode, when the hero finally sat at the helm of the plane and flew. Meresiev’s eyes filled with tears, he could not believe in his happiness. But even more was struck by Lieutenant Naumenko, when he found out that Alexei had no legs: “- Native, yes, yes, you.. you just do not even know what kind of person you are.”
After that, the instructor believed in Meresyev, and gradually Alexei began to fly again. Many more times he rose in the air against the fascists. And many more he destroyed.
I think it is no accident that the name of this pilot became a legend, it is no accident that Boris Polevoy devoted his book to him. I consider its name – “The Story of a Real Man” – very correct. Meresjev – the present Russian person who was able to overcome huge vital difficulties, to leave from all misfortunes the winner. I think that the hero of this book can and should take an example.