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Lake Success  By  cover art

Lake Success

By: Gary Shteyngart
Narrated by: Arthur Morey, Soneela Nankani
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Publisher's summary

"Spectacular." (NPR) "Uproariously funny." (The Boston Globe) “An artistic triumph.” (San Francisco Chronicle) “A novel in which comedy and pathos are exquisitely balanced.” (The Washington Post) "Shteyngart's best book." (The Seattle Times)

The best-selling author of Super Sad True Love Story returns with a biting, brilliant, emotionally resonant novel very much of our times.

Named one of the 10 best books of the year by San Francisco Chronicle and Maureen Corrigan, NPR’s Fresh Air and named one of the best books of the year by The New York Times Book Review, NPR, The Washington Post, O: The Oprah Magazine, Mother Jones, Glamour, Library Journal, Kirkus Reviews, Newsday, Pamela Paul - KQED, Financial Times, and The Globe and Mail.

Narcissistic, hilariously self-deluded, and divorced from the real world as most of us know it, hedge-fund manager Barry Cohen oversees $2.4 billion in assets. Deeply stressed by an SEC investigation and by his three-year-old son’s diagnosis of autism, he flees New York on a Greyhound bus in search of a simpler, more romantic life with his old college sweetheart. Meanwhile, his super-smart wife, Seema - a driven first-generation American who craved the picture-perfect life that comes with wealth - has her own demons to face. How these two flawed characters navigate the Shteyngartian chaos of their own making is at the heart of this piercing exploration of the 0.1 percent, a poignant tale of familial longing and an unsentimental ode to what really makes America great.

Longlisted for the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction

“The fuel and oxygen of immigrant literature - movement, exile, nostalgia, cultural disorientation - are what fire the pistons of this trenchant and panoramic novel.... [It is] a novel so pungent, so frisky and so intent on probing the dissonances and delusions - both individual and collective - that grip this strange land getting stranger.” (The New York Times Book Review)

“Shteyngart, perhaps more than any American writer of his generation, is a natural. He is light, stinging, insolent and melancholy.... The wit and the immigrant’s sense of heartbreak - he was born in Russia - just seem to pour from him. The idea of riding along behind Shteyngart as he glides across America in the early age of Trump is a propitious one. He doesn’t disappoint.” (The New York Times)

©2018 Gary Shteyngart (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

“This is a novel that seems to have been created in real time, reflecting with perfect comedy and horrible tragedy exactly what America feels like right this minute. As I read Lake Success, I barked with laughter, at the same time wincing in pain. Gary Shteyngart has held up a mirror to American culture that is so accurate, and so devastating, that it makes you want to break the mirror right over your own head. I mean this as a good thing. The novel is stupendous.” (Elizabeth Gilbert)

“In Shteyngart’s hands, hard-won family love trumps the false values of materialism. Lake Success is another super sad love story, certainly, but an artistic triumph.” (San Francisco Chronicle)

“A novel in which comedy and pathos are exquisitely balanced...timely but not fleeting. Its bold ambition to capture the nation and the era is enriched by its shrewd attention to the challenges and sorrows of parenthood. Barry Cohen, the glad-handing protagonist, repels our sympathy while laying claim to it.... There’s something uncanny about Shteyngart’s ability to inhabit this man’s boundless confidence, his neediness, his juvenile tendency to fall in love and imagine everyone as a life-changing friend.... [This is also] one of the most heartbreaking novels I’ve read about raising a child with special needs.” (The Washington Post)