A Terrible Country: A Novel Audiobook, by Keith Gessen Play Audiobook Sample

A Terrible Country: A Novel Audiobook

A Terrible Country: A Novel Audiobook, by Keith Gessen Play Audiobook Sample
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Read By: Ari Fliakos Publisher: Penguin Audio Listen Time: at 1.0x Speed 7.67 hours at 1.5x Speed 5.75 hours at 2.0x Speed Release Date: July 2018 Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download ISBN: 9780525630890

Quick Stats About this Audiobook

Total Audiobook Chapters:


Longest Chapter Length:

69:02 minutes

Shortest Chapter Length:

12 seconds

Average Chapter Length:

22:21 minutes

Audiobooks by this Author:


Other Audiobooks Written by Keith Gessen: > View All...

Publisher Description

“Hilarious. . . . To understand Russia, read A Terrible Country.” —Time "This artful and autumnal novel, published in high summer, is a gift to those who wish to receive it." —Dwight Garner, The New York Times "Hilarious, heartbreaking . . . A Terrible Country may be one of the best books you'll read this year." —Ann Levin, Associated Press A New York Times Editors' Choice Named a Best Book of 2018 by Bookforum, Nylon, Esquire, and Vulture A literary triumph about Russia, family, love, and loyalty—from a founding editor of n+1 and the author of Raising Raffi When Andrei Kaplan’s older brother Dima insists that Andrei return to Moscow to care for their ailing grandmother, Andrei must take stock of his life in New York. His girlfriend has stopped returning his text messages. His dissertation adviser is dubious about his job prospects. It’s the summer of 2008, and his bank account is running dangerously low. Perhaps a few months in Moscow are just what he needs. So Andrei sublets his room in Brooklyn, packs up his hockey stuff, and moves into the apartment that Stalin himself had given his grandmother, a woman who has outlived her husband and most of her friends. She survived the dark days of communism and witnessed Russia’s violent capitalist transformation, during which she lost her beloved dacha. She welcomes Andrei into her home, even if she can’t always remember who he is. Andrei learns to navigate Putin’s Moscow, still the city of his birth, but with more expensive coffee. He looks after his elderly—but surprisingly sharp!—grandmother, finds a place to play hockey, a café to send emails, and eventually some friends, including a beautiful young activist named Yulia. Over the course of the year, his grandmother’s health declines and his feelings of dislocation from both Russia and America deepen. Andrei knows he must reckon with his future and make choices that will determine his life and fate. When he becomes entangled with a group of leftists, Andrei’s politics and his allegiances are tested, and he is forced to come to terms with the Russian society he was born into and the American one he has enjoyed since he was a kid. A wise, sensitive novel about Russia, exile, family, love, history and fate, A Terrible County asks what you owe the place you were born, and what it owes you. Writing with grace and humor, Keith Gessen gives us a brilliant and mature novel that is sure to mark him as one of the most talented novelists of his generation.

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“Narrator Ari Fliakos strikes the right tone between pathos and irony in his narration…Fliakos’s rendering of Baba Seva is both heartbreaking and hilarious, leaving an indelible impression of this frail and feisty elderly woman. This fully realized performance of a compelling novel will no doubt find many fans. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.”

— AudioFile 


  • “Hilarious…To understand Russia, read A Terrible Country.”

    — Time
  • "A fresh and often very funny perspective on contemporary Russia."

    — San Francisco Chronicle


  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A BookPage Reading Circle Book Club Pick
  • An Amazon Editor’s Top Pick
  • An Esquire Magazine Best Book of the Year
  • A Vulture.com Pick of Best Books of the Year

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About Keith Gessen

Keith Gessen is the author of A Terrible Country and All the Sad Young Literary Men and a founding editor of n+1. He is the editor of three nonfiction books and the translator or co-translator, from Russian, of a collection of short stories, a book of poems, and a work of oral history, Nobel Prize-winner Svetlana Alexievich’s Voices from Chernobyl. A contributor to the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, and the London Review of Books, he is an assistant professor at the Columbia Journalism School.

About Ari Fliakos

Ari Fliakos is an actor with experience in television, radio, film, theater, and voice-overs. He has earned four Earphones Awards, and his narration of Seth Patrick’s Reviver won the prestigious Audie Award for Best Narration for paranormal fiction. On screen, he is best-known for his roles in Law & Order, Pills, and Company K.