Beyond the Book: Background information when reading Super Sad True Love Story

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Super Sad True Love Story

A Novel

by Gary Shteyngart

Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jul 2010, 352 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2010, 352 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl

Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book

Print Review

Gary ShteyngartIt's perhaps not surprising that with his third novel, Gary Shteyngart should shift his focus from Russia (the setting of his first two novels) to the United States. The novelist was born in Leningrad in 1972 and immigrated to the United States as a young boy. He attended Oberlin College in Ohio, where he received a degree in politics, and Hunter College in New York City, where he received his MFA in creative writing.

Shteyngart's Russian Jewish roots and his American upbringing both inform his fiction, providing him with both an insider's knowingness and an outsider's perspective. In his debut novel The Russian Debutante's Handbook, a failed immigrant returns to his native country, designing financial scams to prey on clueless Americans hoping to make a buck in the ex-Soviet Union. His second novel, Absurdistan, is about a fat, wealthy Russian man who attends college in the United States only to return to a country he neither appreciates nor understands.

Super Sad True Love Story's connections to Russia are less direct, perhaps, but no less relevant, as the hero, Lenny Abramov, grapples to understand not only his own confused reactions to the rapidly changing American landscape but also his complex relationships with his Russian immigrant parents as well as Eunice's even more fraught relations with her Korean immigrant parents. In a future where America's economic prospects are dire at best, where China, India, and, yes, Russia are the real superpowers, the immigrant experience is more complicated than ever, and Shteyngart is well positioned to address these complexities with perceptiveness and humor.

Article by Norah Piehl

This article is from the September 8, 2010 issue of BookBrowse Recommends. Click here to go to this issue.

This article is available to non-members for a limited time. You can also read these articles for free. For full access become a member today.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hillbilly Elegy
    Hillbilly Elegy
    by J.D. Vance
    In this illuminating memoir, Vance recounts his trajectory from growing up a "hillbilly" in ...
  • Book Jacket: The Dark Flood Rises
    The Dark Flood Rises
    by Margaret Drabble
    Margaret Drabble, the award-winning novelist and literary critic who is approaching eighty and ...
  • Book Jacket: All Our Wrong Todays
    All Our Wrong Todays
    by Elan Mastai
    You need a great deal of time to read All Our Wrong Todays, but don't let that put you off. ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Atomic Weight of Love
by Elizabeth J. Church

In the spirit of The Aviator's Wife, this resonant debut spans from World War II through the Vietnam War.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Our Short History
    by Lauren Grodstein

    Lauren Grodstein breaks your heart, then miraculously pieces it back together so it's stronger, than before.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Lola
    by Melissa Scrivner Love

    An astonishing debut crime thriller about an unforgettable woman.
    Reader Reviews

Who Said...

What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading, you wish the author that wrote it was a ...

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

O My D B

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -