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Super Sad True Love Story Paperback – 3 Mar 2011

3.5 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Granta Books; REPRINT edition (3 Mar. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847082491
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847082497
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,496 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Gary Shteyngart's wonderful new novel, "Super Sad True Love Story," is a supersad, superfunny, superaffecting performance -- a book that not only showcases the ebullient satiric gifts...but that also uncovers his abilities to write deeply and movingly about love and loss and mortality. It's a novel that gives us a cutting comic portrait of a futuristic America, nearly ungovernable and perched on the abyss of fiscal collapse, and at the same time it is a novel that chronicles a sweetly real love affair as it blossoms from its awkward, improbable beginnings. Mr. Shteyngart spent his earliest childhood in Leningrad, then moved with his family to the United States, and "Super Sad" reflects his dual heritage, combining the dark soulfulness of Russian literature with the antic inventiveness of postmodern American writing; the tenderness of the Chekhovian tradition with the hormonal high jinks of a Judd Apatow movie...It demonstrates a new emotional bandwidth and ratifies his emergence as on

About the Author

GARY SHTEYNGART was born in Leningrad in 1972 and moved to the United States with his family seven years later. He is the author of two previous novels: The Russian Debutante's Handbook, named one of the best debuts of the year by the Guardian, and the bestselling Absurdistan. His work has appeared in the New Yorker, Granta, Esquire and GQ, and his books have been translated into over twenty languages.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Had Neal Stephenson written "Snow Crash" as a dystopian love story, I'm not sure whether he could have equaled Gary Shteyngart's latest, greatest, novel; a memorable exploration of romantic love set amidst a dystopian near future United States. "Super Sad True Love Story" crackles with much of the same high powered kinetic energy and swift pace of Stephenson's groundbreaking cyberpunk novel - the very first to offer a memorable comedic strain of cyberpunk science fiction - but it is so much more, a brilliant satire of clashing American immigrant values and a well paced, well conceived, romantic love story between the most unlikely of protagonists; thirty nine year-old Russian-American Lenny Abramov , and his much younger lover, twenty four year-old Korean-American Eunice Park. Shteyngart excels in exploring the inevitable cultural clash between immigrant Korean and Russian cultures, as New York City and the rest of the United States heads relentlessly towards both economic and sociological implosion. Here he relies on crisp, fast-paced dialogue which may remind some readers of David Foster Wallace's, often laced with pathos and sharp satirical wit.

Without question, Shteyngart's new novel is science fiction, even if much of the science fictional aspects of the tale are often pushed aside, as the author gives his readers full, undivided, attention to the romantic twists and turns of Abramov and Park's unlikely romance.
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Format: Paperback
The book is a romance set in a dystopian youth-obsessed near-future where China is supreme, a neo-facist United States is collapsing and reads rather like a cross between Clockwork Orange, Brave New World and Annie Hall. It manages to be funny, romantic and terrifying simultaneously and often feels worryingly prophetic.Like much science fiction it is more about today than the future.
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Format: Paperback
'Super Sad True Love Story' is an example of an increasingly common phenomenon: a literary novel with a science-fictional premise. Set at some point during the twenty-first century, Shteyngart gives us a world in which certain present-day trends have reached fruition. China is the dominant economic power. The US is effectively bankrupt, is embroiled in a foreign war - this time in Venezuela - and at home has degenerated into a quasi-fascist security state fueled by paranoia. Social networking has reached an apogee of all-pervading intrusiveness: every American citizen carries an äppärät, a sort of super mobile phone-cum-internet terminal through which the user can access all relevant data concerning any individual (while simultaneously broadcasting their own data to all). Financial and sexual privacy have vanished. The individual's credit rating is broadcast - and recalculated - publicly. 'Personality' and sexual desirability are indexed, so that a man may discover that he is both the least desirable and the least financially enviable person in any given gathering - and know that everyone in the room also knows.

Against this backdrop the author creates the love story of the title: the tale of how two deeply mismatched individuals come together to pursue personal happiness in an unpropitious time. Lenny Abramov is the 39-year-old son of first-generation Russian immigrants, working for an organisation whose goal is human immortality. Eunice Park is the 24-year-old daughter of Korean immigrants, fresh out of college, uncertain of her place in the world and under pressure to conform to the expectations of her conservative parents.
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By Alexa VINE VOICE on 2 July 2016
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My feelings about this book are very mixed.

On the one hand, Gary Steyngart is a very skilled writer. Little nuances do so much to portray the personality of his characters, even though we know them only through their first person narratives.

But this the third book of his that I have read; yet again his protagonist is a physically unattractive, Russian-American Jew who is obsessed with the unsatisfactory nature of his sex life. Their circumstances are ostensibly different: Vladimir is from a priviliged immigrant background adventuring in a thinly desguised Czech Republic and getting involved with the Russian Mafiya, Misha is a Russian gangster's son, desperate to get U.S. citizenship, but shunted off instead to an equally thinly disguised Azerbaijan, whilst Leonid returns from a year-long business trip to Italy to a near-future America where neo-fascists are in the process of seizing power. But basically the story is the same: privileged American guy continually portrays himself as the victim, because he is not getting the sex that he wants...

The sense of elitist entitlement is strongest here: Leonid explicitly complains that although he is middle-aged and not good-looking, he is intelligent and a considerate lover, so it is intolerable that he should not get the young, beautiful woman whom he lusts after and that 'life' expects him to settle for the slightly dumpy, intelligent and competent woman of his own age who adores him! His sense of injustice, and the vocabulary with which he belittles the woman who possesses the exact virtues that he prides himself on (and more) is nauseating to read.
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