Super Sad True Love Story
is the third novel by American writer Gary Shteyngart
Gary Shteyngart is an American writer born in Leningrad, USSR. Much of his work is satirical and relies on the invention of elaborately fictitious yet somehow familiar places and times.-Life:...
. The novel takes place in a near-future dystopian New York where life is dominated by media and retail.
The son of a Russian immigrant, protagonist Leonard (Lenny) Abramov, a middle-aged, middle class, and otherwise unremarkable man whose mentality is still in the past century, falls madly in love with Eunice Park, a young Korean-American struggling with materialism
In philosophy, the theory of materialism holds that the only thing that exists is matter; that all things are composed of material and all phenomena are the result of material interactions. In other words, matter is the only substance...
and the pressures of her traditional Korean family. The chapters alternate between profuse diary entries from the old fashioned Lenny and Eunice's biting e-mail correspondence on her "GlobalTeens" account. In the background of what appears to be a love story that oscillates between superficiality and despair, a grim political situation unravels. America is on the brink of economic collapse, threatened by their Chinese creditors. In the meantime, the totalitarian Bipartisan government's main mission is to encourage and promote consumerism while eliminating political dissidents. In the midst of all this, in a world where anyone's sexuality can be rated at the touch of the screen, where the privileged can live forever but the unfortunate die too soon, there is still value to being a real human being.
The novel won the Salon Book Award (Fiction, 2010) and the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize
The Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize is the UK's only literary award for comic literature. Established in 2000 and named in honour of P G Wodehouse, past winners include Paul Torday in 2007 with Salmon Fishing in the Yemen and Marina Lewycka with A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian 2005 and...
(2011). It was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (Fiction & Poetry, 2010), New York Times bestseller (Fiction, 2010), Amazon's Best Books of the Month (August 2010).
It was named one of the best books of the year by The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, The Seattle Times, O: The Oprah Magazine, Maureen Corrigan, NPR, Salon, Slate, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, The Kansas City Star, Charlotte Observer, The Globe and Mail, Vancouver Sun, Montreal Gazette, and Kirkus Reviews.