Our Country Friends

by Gary Shteyngart · read November 21, 2021


Entertaining, in a self-congratulatory and -indulgent 'educated liberal' kind of way. Each of the storylines felt like it could have been developed a bit more, and I thought the ending was fragmented and weird. I loved the scene where Dee starts a dinner conversation about privilege — that made the entire novel for me.

He still loved all of her, even the gracelessness of her hungry, perennially dissatisfied immigrant soul, even the cruelty of her turns of phrase and the foulness of her triple-espresso breath. But he had to think like a character in a Chekhov play, forever taunted by desires but trapped in a life much too small to accommodate the entirety of a human being.

Julia Cooke © 2024