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My Education Hardcover – July 3, 2013
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Laurence, the other teaching assistant, married with a lovely wife and child, always attired in Brooks Brothers everything, becomes a friend. When the two are invited to the professor's home, Regina finds herself caught in a sexual attraction that turns into an affair with the wrong person.
This novel is a story of a certain coming-of-age; the education involves friendships and misplaced passions. As I read, the novel brought back memories of some of my own youthful passions and indiscretions. Even so, I must admit to not quite liking Regina, even as I identified with some of her feelings and even some of her actions.
Many of us have had that "great passion" - the one that involves obsession and quite pushes aside any moral qualms. Susan Choi so perfectly captures that in this novel - the sexual conflicts and tensions that arise in our youth and the price we usually pay for them.
Smartly written, with deft, clever prose, I can see this one winning an award or two.
My mother's voice was known to interfere with radio broadcasts and to summon stray dogs; in her late girlhood, when her nuclear grin and her lightning-fast hands had landed her a job as a typist with the U.S. Armed Forces based in Manila, she'd been useful for mustering troops who could otherwise sleep through all bugles and bells.Read more ›
It is 1992 and Regina Gottlieb, 20 years old, is starting her graduate degree. From the very first time she sees him at a poetry reading, Regina is mesmerized by Nicholas Brodeur, the seductive English professor with a rather shocking reputation. Although she is well aware that it may not be the smartest thing to do, Regina accepts a job as his assistant and slowly finds herself entering the world Nicholas and his wife, Martha, inhabit. Getting closer to Nicholas and Martha means a distance develops between Regina and her house-mate, friend and occasional lover, Dutra.
While it is Regina's fascination with Nicholas Brodeur and his reputation that entices her into his orbit, he won't be the subject of her fantasies and desires. A passionate affair will follow, but instead of Nicholas it will be the person closest to him who captivates Regina to such an extent that she disregards the consequences her feelings and actions will have, both for herself and for those around her. And it won't be until 15 years later that the conflicts that started in 1992 and their lasting consequences come to the surface and have a chance of being put to rest.
I am not entirely sure how I feel about this book or what to say about it. This a rather typical coming-of-age story in that it portrays the journey a young woman makes from the innocence and happy-go-lucky lifestyle so typical of teenagers to the very real and harsh consequences that an affair and first deep, but unattainable love can bring. And the gravity of everything Regina encounters and experiences jumps of the page in the form of long and at times seemingly mindless descriptions of everything she sees, feels, does and experiences. And that is where my main issue with this book lies.Read more ›
The second half of the book, which takes place 14 years after the first, doesn't really seem to make sense, as to how the characters ended where they did. And although I found the ending compelling, there was very little portent of it when I thought back to earlier in the book, which made it seem unlikely.
I rarely regret having read a book, but I'm a bit sorry I wasted my time and money on this one.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Susan Choi is a spellbinding storyteller, and she uses her all her powers in My Education: A Novel. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Arwen Staros Duffy
I'm tired of reading literotic fantasies of what heterosexuals think homosexual relationships are like. Read morePublished 8 months ago
I loved the first half of the book, but the ending dragged on and took a bizarre (not in a good way) turn.Published 9 months ago by C. Ferguson
Two thirds of the book cover Regina's time as a young graduate student, starting out with some promise but quickly devolving to a long drawn out tale of her self-destructive... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Dms48
Loved it! It is the 3rd Susan Choi novel I have read---Loved them all.Published 19 months ago by Joan France Luzier
It is too wordy and I don't really understand the passion but I will finish it.Published 19 months ago by Mad4books