''A Hero of Our Time'' (Russian: "Герой нашего времени") is a classical Russian novel by [[RussianReading Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov]], written and revised between 1839 and 1841.

The plot concerns a certain Grigory Pechorin, a [[IdleRich Russian aristocrat]], a [[AnOfficerAndAGentleman military officer]], and a ByronicHero, and follows his adventures during his stay (implied to be involuntary) in the Caucasus Region. The novel consists of five parts (plus FramingDevice):

* ''Bela''. TheWatson ([[LiteraryAgentHypothesis implied to be Lermontov himself]]) meets an OldSoldier Maxim [[{{Patronymic}} Maximich]] while traveling across Caucasus, who tells him a story how an old friend of his (Pechorin) once fell in love with and kidnapped a highlander princess (it didn't work out).
* ''Maxim Maximich''. TheWatson tells of a chance meeting between Maxim Maximich and Pechorin that he accidentally witnessed. Afterwards, Maxim Maximich hands over Pechorin's diaries to him.
* ''Taman''. An excerpt from Pechorin's diary: soon after his arrival to Caucasus, he gets involved with a local FemmeFatale and a smuggler gang.
* ''Princess Mary''. Pechorin is stationed in Pyatigorsk and has an affair with two women: an OldFlame of his and the eponymous princess. In the end, he kills a guy on a duel and is [[ReassignedToAntarctica reassigned to Maxim Maximich's outpost]].
* ''The Fatalist''. Pechorin is out drinking and gambling with fellow officers, and then one of them shoots himself in the head on a bet. He dies but not by the bullet.

Lermontov also published a short essay ''The Caucasian'' (1840; as in "someone from Caucasus", not "pale-faced"), wherein he more or less describes Maxim Maximich's BackStory (without any names). Additionally, ''[=AHoOT=]'' can be seen as a sequel to his unfinished novel ''Princess Ligovskaya'' (1838), which also features Grigory Pechorin (who may or [[InNameOnly may not]] be the same character) and is set in StPetersburg.
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!!Tropes found in the novel include:

* AnachronicOrder: Part one tells how TheNarrator came into possession of Pechorin's diaries, while part two consists of excerpts from it.
* AuthorAvatar: Some interpret Pechorin as this.
* TheBerserker: Pechorin has traces of this.
* BusCrash: Pechorin is last seen in the narrative in ''Maxim Maximich'' while en route to Persia and the [[FramingDevice intro to his diary]] reveals that he died on the way back.
* TheCasanova: Deconstructed. Pechorin is quite the ladies' man; however, he has a unique talent for wrecking the lives of the women he's involved with, and feeling little remorse for it.
* ByronicHero: Pechorin is one of the most famous ones in Russian literature. However, see DeconstructorFleet below.
* CharacterTitle:
** The novel title refers to Pechorin, whom the author considered a contemporary hero despite his major flaws.
** ''Bela'', ''Maxim Maximich'', and ''Princess Mary'' are all named after the characters whose life Pechorin has a major impact upon.
** ''The Fatalist'' is not so clear cut: according to various interpretations, it can refer to Vulich, Pechorin, or Maxim Maximich (or all at once but in different senses).
* CompositeCharacter: The author intended Pechorin to be a composite of all the creative spirits of his age.
* CustomUniform: Grushnitsky wears a Private's coat over his officer cadet uniform.
* TheDandy: Pechorin.
* DeconstructorFleet: In ''Bela'' and ''Taman'', Lermontov picks apart the "wacky Caucasus adventures" genre prominent during his time. The central character is a darker, more realistic take on the ByronicHero archetype, and Grushnitsky is an outright mockery of the concept. The novel as a whole is regarded as the author's farewell to Romanticism.
* DuelToTheDeath: Double-subverted with Pechorin vs. Grushnitsky: [[spoiler:Grushnitsky's friends persuade him to miss on purpose and try to load Pechorin's gun with a blank, but Pechorin uncovers their plan by chance and kills Grushnitsky]].
* FemmeFatale: The "Undine".
* {{Foil}}: Grushnitsky to Pechorin.
* GenreSavvy: Pechorin seems to be completely aware of his ByronicHero status.
* IdleRich: More or less every aristocrat in the book.
* IntroOnlyPointOfView
* LifeImitatesArt: A duel between officers is a major plot point in the novel. Very soon, Lermontov himself will die in a duel with a fellow officer.
* LifeWillKillYou: Vulich survives shooting himself in the head unscathed, then [[spoiler:is killed by a drunk Cossack returning home]].
* LiteraryAgentHypothesis: The nameless traveling officer who "inherits" Pechorin's diaries is never openly identified with Lermontov.
* MeaningfulName: Pechorin is named after the Pechora River, just like Creator/AlexanderPushkin's ''Literature/EugeneOnegin'' was named after the Onega River.
* AnOfficerAndAGentleman
* OldFlame: Vera to Pechorin (and probably vice versa).
* OldSoldier: Maxim Maximich.
* {{Patronymic}}: "Maximich" is actually a colloquial shortening of "Maximovich", "son of Maxim".
* ThePlace: ''Taman'' is named after a small Russian town on the coast of the Black Sea.
* ReassignedToAntarctica: Pechorin is sent into the wilderness after his duel with Grushnitsky. It is implied that he was reassigned to Caucasus in the first place because of a similar incident in StPetersburg earlier.
* RussianRoulette: Kinda. Vulich's gun is a one-shot pistol... with a chance of jamming.
* SceneryPorn: Lermontov's descriptions of Caucasus mountains and the nature.
* ScrewDestiny / YouCannotFightFate: Both tropes are {{discussed}} and explored in ''The Fatalist''.
* TheWatson: The unnamed traveling officer who falls into possession of Pechorin's diaries.
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