Tolstoy called Anna Karenina the first novel he ever wrote, even though he started War and Peace first. (Source: Pevear, Richard. Introduction. Anna Karenina.)
Anna Karenina was an Oprah Book Club recommendation in 2004, which propelled it to the bestseller lists that same year. (Check out Anna Karenina on on Oprah's Book Club.)
In Milan Kundera's novel The Unbearable Lightness of Being, the character Tereza, whose husband frequently cheats on her, names her pet dog Karenin.