Super Sad True Love Story, by Gary Shteyngart

A review of Super Sad True Love Story, by Gary Shteyngart

@@@@@ (5 out of 5)

Imagine the USA 10 or 15 years down the road. The dollar is pegged to the yuan, and a tyrannical right-wing government is in power. The divide between High Net Worth Individuals and Low is a chasm that cannot be spanned. The country is bogged down in a losing war in Venezuela. Everyone carries an “apparat” — an always-online device that broadcasts its carrier’s Male or Female Hotness, health and nutritional benchmarks, and provides access to intimate correspondence. Not only are there no secrets from the government. There are no secrets among the people, either. Even your credit rating hovers brightly in the air above your head when you pass a Credit Pole on the street.

This is the USA Gary Shteyngart creates to showcase the truly sad love story of Lenny Abramov (Russian-American, age 39, depressive reader of books) and Eunice Park (Korean-American, age 24, anorexic, self-obsessed, and cruel shopaholic like all her friends). The tale of their troubled relationship plays out against the backdrop of a city (New York) and a country in the throes of total collapse. It’s not a pretty picture — but it’s extremely funny.

Super Sad True Love Story is Shteyngart’s third novel, and it’s the best of the lot. It follows The Russian Debutante’s Handbook and Absurdistan, both brilliantly satirical. All three are characterized by the author’s masterful way with language and his delicious sense of humor.

ISBN-10: 1400066409

ISBN-13: 978-1400066407

ASIN: B0036S4BSA

3 Comments

Filed under Science Fiction, Trade Fiction

3 responses to “Super Sad True Love Story, by Gary Shteyngart

  1. Larry Shapiro

    Hi Mal,

    Haven’t read it yet, although I read the excerpt in the New Yorker. I’m waiting for my wife to finish it and then I’ll read it.

    I’ve read both of his previous books. I think they are wonderful.

    I am familiar with the coops on Grand Street that the main character lives in. They are essentially what is left of the Jewish Lower East Side. My parents lived there before I was born.

    He captures them perfectly. I am pestering my wife to finish the book soon.

    By the way. I love my Kindle. I think I read quite a bit more since I bought it. I am currently in the middle of Jonathan Lethem’s Fortress of Solitude, which is excellent.

    Hope you are well.

    • Great to hear from you, Larry! I too have read all three of Shteyngart’s books. I imagine him to be quite a character. If you wonder why, check out the photo on Google Images of him with a bear on a leash.

  2. Pingback: A baker’s dozen of my favorite novels | Mal Warwick's Blog on Books

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s