If there is one word to describe Elif Batuman's new novel The Idiot, it's the word "mundane." And that just might be the novel's greatest strength. The book follows the year in the life of Selin, a Turkish-American freshman at Harvard. As Selin goes through her freshman year, she must navigate getting along with her roommates, an infatuation/ relationship with an older Hungarian student, and later, a trip to Europe to teach English. Oh, and all the while dealing with the typical college freshman woes of examining the relationship between truth, existence, and language while studying linguistics. Casual.
- Published in Culture & Art