Rudin is the story of Dmitri Nikolaevich Rudin, the titular character, who travels to the Russian countryside to stay with the widowed female landowner Darya Mikhailovna Lasunskaya.
He interacts with her small social circle: her daughter Natalya Aleskeevna Lasunskaya, her secretary Konstantin Diomidych Pandalevskii; and other landowners: the brother and sister Sergei Pavlovich Volyntsev and Aleksandra Pavlovna Lipina, woman hating Afrikan Semenych Pigasov, and social eschewing Mihailo Mihailych Lezhnev.
At first, the intelligence and vivacity of Rudin enraptures them all. However, as time progresses, his true nature, his inability to settle down and put energy into anything substantial, is revealed to all.
Each character ends up responding to Rudin differently by the close of the novel. Lezhnev has empathy, Aleksandra Pavlovna has pity, Volyntsev has irritation, Darya Mikhailovna has disinterest, and Natalya Aeskeevna has scorn.
I liked in the beginning, Turgenev displays Rudin in a very positive manner. There doesn't seem to be anything wrong with him. This slowly twists in the other direction as the story progresses.
I thought the characters were developed as well as they could be in so short of a novel. Certainly, Turgenev could have doubled the amount of writing to tell the same message. Everything is to the point and there's no extra fluff.
Natasha was an intriguing character. I wondered what her future would be like. I underestimated her ability to see through Rudin and was surprised at that scene. It's great to see a strong, young female character pull through a torrent of emotion.
Overall, Rudin is a man full of passion, without an actual passion to put all the energy towards.