The Trial is a novel by Franz Kafka about a man accused of an unknown crime. The story follows Joseph K. who is arrested and brought before a powerful and mysterious court that does not inform him why he is being tried. K. tries vainly to navigate the convoluted and dehumanizing bureaucracy of the court, hiring a lawyer through his uncle and getting advice from a painter Titorelli who all tell him that his situation is hopeless. In the end he is executed.

Summary of The Trial by Franz Kafka

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The Trial Chapter Summaries (Free)

1SparkNotes

Review: The most popular website for book notes. SparkNotes was created by students for students, and their summaries are accessible and extremely well-written. Besides the usual plot overview, chapter summaries, and character analysis, SparkNotes differentiates itself with a section discussing themes, motifs, and symbols.

2Pink Monkey

Review: Their chapter summaries aren't as good as other providers, but PinkMonkey often has interesting insights that aren't mentioned elsewhere on the Internet. For example, they go over literary elements (like setting, conflict, and mood), compare and contrast, and symbolism/motifs. It's a good site if you want to find a unique fact or angle that other students don't know about.