Gary Shteyngart and George Saunders reading

Entertaining video from the New Yorker festival. Shteyngart (whose Russian Debutante's Handbook I am currently absorbing) reads from "Absurdistan," and Saunders reads from his new story collection.


Dexter said...

Enjoyed Absurdistan...have you read the Debutante's Handbook? Worth checking out?

Grendel said...

I'm about 2/3 the way through Russian Debutante's Handbook. It's been a while since I've been on the fence so long with a book. On the one hand, the writing is fresh and funny. It's an entertaining read, no doubt about it. On the other hand, the protagonist is pretty much a shallow jerk. I'm not sure why I am interested in his life. It's very 90s, all about being young, making money, trying to be hip, juggling lust, recklessness, and success ... I relate less and less to this kind of thing. There's no moral center, not even an aggressively negative one. Just a kind of kidding of oneself and lying to others in youthful exuberance. I couldn't recommend it, but I haven't given up on it quite yet.