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The Idiot
(OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen)

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Published:
Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group 2017
Status:
Checked Out
Description
A New York Times Book Review Notable Book • Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction • Longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction

“Easily the funniest book I’ve read this year.” —GQ

“Masterly funny debut novel . .  . Erudite but never pretentious, The Idiot will make you crave more books by Batuman.” —Sloane Crosley, Vanity Fair

A portrait of the artist as a young woman. A novel about not just discovering but inventing oneself.


The year is 1995, and email is new. Selin, the daughter of Turkish immigrants, arrives for her freshman year at Harvard. She signs up for classes in subjects she has never heard of, befriends her charismatic and worldly Serbian classmate, Svetlana, and, almost by accident, begins corresponding with Ivan, an older mathematics student from Hungary. Selin may have barely spoken to Ivan, but with each email they exchange, the act of writing seems to take on new and increasingly mysterious meanings. 
 
At the end of the school year, Ivan goes to Budapest for the summer, and Selin heads to the Hungarian countryside, to teach English in a program run by one of Ivan's friends. On the way, she spends two weeks visiting Paris with Svetlana. Selin's summer in Europe does not resonate with anything she has previously heard about the typical experiences of American college students, or indeed of any other kinds of people. For Selin, this is a journey further inside herself: a coming to grips with the ineffable and exhilarating confusion of first love, and with the growing consciousness that she is doomed to become a writer.

With superlative emotional and intellectual sensitivity, mordant wit, and pitch-perfect style, Batuman dramatizes the uncertainty of life on the cusp of adulthood. Her prose is a rare and inimitable combination of tenderness and wisdom; its logic as natural and inscrutable as that of memory itself. The Idiot is a heroic yet self-effacing reckoning with the terror and joy of becoming a person in a world that is as intoxicating as it is disquieting. Batuman's fiction is unguarded against both life's affronts and its beauty—and has at its command the complete range of thinking and feeling which they entail.

Named one the best books of the year by Refinery29 Mashable One • Elle Magazine • The New York Times • Bookpage • Vogue • NPR • Buzzfeed The Millions
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Format:
OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen
Edition:
Unabridged
Street Date:
03/14/2017
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781524734954
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Elif Batuman. (2017). The Idiot. Unabridged Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Elif Batuman. 2017. The Idiot. Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Elif Batuman, The Idiot. Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, 2017.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Elif Batuman. The Idiot. Unabridged Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, 2017.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
Copy Details
LibraryOwnedAvailable
Shared Digital Collection40

There are 20 holds on this title.

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Grouped Work ID:
f6a22bc9-94ec-7295-393a-6cae95257eae
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Needs Update?:
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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 18:56:25
Date Updated:
Jun 12, 2018 18:56:25
Last Metadata Check:
Jul 01, 2022 20:35:13
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Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
Jul 01, 2022 11:38:07

OverDrive Product Record

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title
The Idiot
fullDescription
A New York Times Book Review Notable Book • Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction • Longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction

“Easily the funniest book I’ve read this year.” —GQ

“Masterly funny debut novel . .  . Erudite but never pretentious, The Idiot will make you crave more books by Batuman.” —Sloane Crosley, Vanity Fair

A portrait of the artist as a young woman. A novel about not just discovering but inventing oneself.


The year is 1995, and email is new. Selin, the daughter of Turkish immigrants, arrives for her freshman year at Harvard. She signs up for classes in subjects she has never heard of, befriends her charismatic and worldly Serbian classmate, Svetlana, and, almost by accident, begins corresponding with Ivan, an older mathematics student from Hungary. Selin may have barely spoken to Ivan, but with each email they exchange, the act of writing seems to take on new and increasingly mysterious meanings. 
 
At the end of the school year, Ivan goes to Budapest for the summer, and Selin heads to the Hungarian countryside, to teach English in a program run by one of Ivan's friends. On the way, she spends two weeks visiting Paris with Svetlana. Selin's summer in Europe does not resonate with anything she has previously heard about the typical experiences of American college students, or indeed of any other kinds of people. For Selin, this is a journey further inside herself: a coming to grips with the ineffable and exhilarating confusion of first love, and with the growing consciousness that she is doomed to become a writer.

With superlative emotional and intellectual sensitivity, mordant wit, and pitch-perfect style, Batuman dramatizes the uncertainty of life on the cusp of adulthood. Her prose is a rare and inimitable combination of tenderness and wisdom; its logic as natural and inscrutable as that of memory itself. The Idiot is a heroic yet self-effacing reckoning with the terror and joy of becoming a person in a world that is as intoxicating as it is disquieting. Batuman's fiction is unguarded against both life's affronts and its beauty—and has at its command the complete range of thinking and feeling which they entail.

Named one the best books of the year by Refinery29 Mashable One • Elle Magazine • The New York Times • Bookpage • Vogue • NPR • Buzzfeed The Millions
reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        Starred review from January 2, 2017
        The mysterious relationship between language and the world” is just one of the questions troubling Selin Karada˘g, the 18-year-old protagonist of Batuman’s (The Possessed) wonderful first novel, a bildungsroman Selin narrates with fluent wit and inexorable intelligence. Beginning her first year at Harvard in the fall of 1995, Selin is determined to “be a courageous person, uncowed by other people’s dumb opinions”; she already thinks of herself as a writer, although “this conviction was completely independent of having ever written anything.” In a Russian class, the Turkish-American Selin is befriended by the worldlier Svetlana, whose Serbian family has endowed her with capital and complexes, and the older Hungarian math major Ivan, who becomes Selin’s correspondent in an exciting new medium: email. Their late-night exchanges inspire Selin more than anything else in her life, but they frustrate her, too: Ivan’s intentions toward her are vague, perhaps even to himself. Traveling to Paris with Svetlana in the summer of 1996, Selin plans to continue on to Hungary, where she will teach English in a village school, and then to Turkey, where her extended family resides. Thus Batuman updates the grand tour travelogue just as she does the epistolary novel and the novel of ideas, in prose as deceptively light as it is ambitious. One character wonders whether it’s possible “to be sincere without sounding pretentious,” and this long-awaited and engrossing novel delivers a resounding yes.

      • premium: True
      • source: AudioFile Magazine
      • content: The author of this book narrates as 18-year-old Turkish-American Selin begins her first year at Harvard. It's 1995, and Selin strives to be an ethical person who thinks independently, unaffected by others' opinions. A likable young woman who is coping with frustrations and confused emotions, Selin meets several original characters, including Serbian Svetlana, Hungarian Ivan, and American Ralph, who is obsessed with the Kennedy family. The audiobook would have been better served by a more professional narration, as the author's isn't as colorful as her novel. There are long passages in which nothing happens, yet the novel is filled with affecting vignettes and strange conversations. As Selin understands her limitations and awakens to her possibilities, Batuman's observations are dark, satiric, and very funny. S.J.H. � AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine
      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        August 1, 2017

        Batuman makes her fiction debut already a literary darling: a New Yorker staff writer since 2010 and the author of a much-adored essay collection, The Possessed, about the pleasurable intricacies of reading Russian literature. The year is 1995, and Turkish American 18-year-old Selin enters Harvard. She takes classes and makes friends, but her most important connection develops via email--new and enigmatic back then--with Ivan, an older student she rarely sees although she pines for his virtual missives. With freshman year over, she stops through France on her way to Hungary--because Ivan is there--where she'll be teaching English in a small village. Back at Harvard in the fall, she realizes, "I hadn't learned anything at all." In 2006, her "Short Story & Novel" contribution to highbrow literary journal n+1 included the line: "Write long novels, pointless novels." The Idiot is just that. As if to add further emphasis, Batuman plods through almost 14 hours of narration. With a novel so thoroughly hyped, listed, and award-predicted, perhaps disappointment is inevitable. VERDICT Despite Batuman's obvious erudition, crafting gorgeous phrases and being fluent in both philosophy and philology aren't enough to redeem this Idiot. ["Highly detailed and determinedly linear": LJ 12/16 review of the Penguin Pr. hc.]--Terry Hong, Smithsonian BookDragon, Washington, DC

        Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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A New York Times Book Review Notable Book • Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction • Longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction

“Easily the funniest book I’ve read this year.” —GQ

“Masterly funny debut novel . .  . Erudite but never pretentious, The Idiot will make you crave more books by Batuman.” —Sloane Crosley, Vanity Fair

A portrait of the artist as a young woman. A novel about not just discovering but inventing oneself.


The year is 1995, and email is new. Selin, the daughter of Turkish immigrants, arrives for her freshman year at Harvard. She signs up for classes in subjects she has never heard of, befriends her charismatic and worldly Serbian classmate, Svetlana, and, almost by accident, begins corresponding with Ivan, an older mathematics student from Hungary. Selin may have barely spoken to...
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awards
      • source: Columbia University
      • value: Pulitzer Prize Finalist
publisher
Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group