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Novel With Cocaine

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  1,049 ratings  ·  79 reviews
A bizarre and deeply disturbing account of a young man's descent into addiction, this story brilliantly mirrors the tumultuous events of early 20th-century Russian history. Struggling with the confusion and insecurities that adolescence brings, Vadim seeks an outlet for his frustration. Following unfulfilling attempts at classroom rebellion, filial disobedience, and teenag ...more
174 pages
Published by Macmillan General Books (first published 1934)
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Joshua Nomen-Mutatio
Soundtrack: Baths - Maximalist

Spent two days a week shoving rather pricey quantities of oft-jagged euphoria up their snout, the nearest conduit to the terrible/beautiful master, the hub of experience, the center of narrative gravity, all transformed into a polis of sheer pleasure, pumping its flood 'round itself, the radiant, briefly blinding, photoflashbursts of a crackling and snapping electrical whitehotheat trumpeted its silent blaring in one set of ears alone. The clearblue afternoon visi
The gall of Nabokov scorning this novel as ‘disgusting’(which it is, but that’s beside the point. Pot? Kettle?). Disgusting, degenerate, harrowing, eternally haunting: Agayev has the uncanny ability to grasp the macabre and ply his chisel in its spent chamber: twisting, furling, stretching: convex, concave: peels it open and reams out the sinews of sin and depravity. And cocaine has nothing to do with it at all: Vadim had surrendered in the cemetery of his soul long before the white stuff left h ...more
MJ Nicholls
This book has the dubious honour of being the 400th book I’ve read over the last two years, the first being John Barth’s appalling Coming Soon!!! (whose three exclamation marks speak of a desperation undignified for such a dignified dignitary). If you think I’m some sort of freak who lives in a tin house with nine cats, you’d be right, only I don’t have cats and I live in a Glasgow flat with ceilings so high all the heat collects ten feet above me. As a consequence I write this enswaddled in fur ...more
Odai Alsaeed
لم تك رواية كوكايين متفائلة كغيرها من الروايات التي خصت موضوع المخدر الأبيض الكرستالي فقد جاءت معبرة ومؤثر مغلفة في إطار حزين في كل طياتها...ولم تبحث هذه الرواية العميقة المؤثرة في الموضوع السابق فقط فقد كانت مدشنة بتخمة في أبعاد ثقافيةوموضوعية تخللتها مواضيع تبحث في لغات الجسد وفلسفته كما خاضت في مضمارالعلاقة الأسرية متغلغلة بشرح قاتم ومؤلم لعلاقة مخزية ومحزنة تخص العقوق
هذه الرواية لم تأخذ حقها الاعلامي أبدا وهي واحدة من أجرأ وأعمق الروايات التي قرأت فالقدرة السردية والفلسفية لدى المؤلف ساحرة
Ala AbuTaki
تتركك هذه الرواية منتفخاً بفقاعة حزنٍ شفافة , وممتعضاً من الطريقة الفاضحة والصريحة والحقيقية التي يعبر بها الكاتب عن أعمق المشاعر الإنسانية . عن أمه والأصدقاء وحبيبته .. والكوكايين !

باردة , وحارقة في آن .

الترجمة جميلة , ومُتقنة , لن أتردد في اقتناء ترجمات حسين عمر أبداً
You cannot argue with a book called Novel with Cocaine. I feel a little weird giving it a rating... it's kind of like if you saw an old Russian man have a seizure under a bench in a decrepit public park somewhere and you were like, hmm, that's an ok seizure but not too convincing - here's 3 stars, and then the man screamed something unitelligible and mightily soiled himself and you were like oh! oh! make that 4 stars! damn, now that's a seizure!

Anyway, this book is classicly Russian (paraphrase

Il romanzo segue il tracollo del protagonista in diverse fasi della sua vita: prima al ginnasio, poi nella relazione con una donna di cui è innamorato fino all'incontro con la cocaina che darà il colpo di grazia rendendolo dipendente.
Il romanzo è costituito dalle riflessioni di Vadim che analizza ogni episodio della sua vita per trovarne il senso e per capire meglio se stesso e quelli che lo circondano.
Vadim è un protagonista riflessivo, questo sì, ma anche profondamente insicuro, tanto da
Marilyn Moreau
Dark, dirty, unclean, much wisdom in its pages, the story set out what it intended to do. The drugs are actually a minuscule part of the book. The horror comes from the way the narrator's mind works and the actions that result from that. A friend pointed out that early on, the narrator speaks of having a disease, similarly to the way Dostoevsky's narrator in The Underground Man begins with "I am a sick man." After considering that, and other events and thoughts that occur in the two books, I wou ...more
Много хубаво, много силно и много руско! Така както руски автор може да подхване един обикновен човек и да го довърши толкова трагично, не знам друг да може. Повествованието е с градация. Най-силната част е тази за кокаина, както и мислите за него. Препоръчвам!
Jonathan Turner
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Marija Atanasova
Започнува како компилација од Цанкаровите „Петолирка“ и „Кафе“ (синот се срами од сопствената мајка и впечатокот што го остава нејзината парталава појава врз неговите соученици; одрекува поврзаност со неа и се шегува на сметка на нејзиниот изглед и старост; за подоцна да биде измачуван од совеста, пронижан од мајчиниот страдалнички, кроток поглед).
Збунувачки прониклив и чувствителен, а истовремено бездушен кон своите блиски, Вадим е растргнат помеѓу сочувството, срамот што го чувствува поради и
Тази книга е опиат. Тя е кокаин. Изпива силите и те оставя безмълвен. Една нереална действителност, малко страшна, но завладяваща и много, много болезнена. А и много руска.

И типично по руски в романа се говори за крайности. За нежност и озлобление, за щастие и отчаяние, за движение по ръба на една безкрайна бездна. Дрогата е само тъжният финал, а преди него началото поставя самият живот. Защото и той е изтъкан от крайности и от неразрешими проблеми, пред които търсещият млад човек скланя глава.
Guy Portman
Set in the years immediately before and after the Russian Revolution, Novel with Cocaine follows the life of Vadim, a Moscow adolescent and student. Vadim is prone to self-loathing and disdainful of others, none more so than his mother, whose aged appearance and shabby clothes he finds acutely embarrassing. One night he seduces a girl, this despite the fact that unbeknown to her he is suffering from a venereal disease. Later he meets Sonya, an older, married woman, whom he becomes infatuated wit ...more
Elvira Baryakina
Это чистой воды literary fiction, что обычно неправильно переводят как "интеллектуальная проза". А здесь речь идет не столько об особой интеллектуальности, сколько об игре словами как искусстве. Высоком искусстве, надо сказать. Тем, кто ценит подобные наслаждения, скорее всего, понравится.

Сюжет рваный, выстроенный лишь с наметками классического "завязка - кульминация - развязка". Такое ощущение, что это нечто вроде записок для памяти: философия, наблюдения, выводы, сны, опыт... трогательные, уве
Hard for me not to like the writer of a line like: 'The water in the kitchen dripped like snapping strings.' The start of this book read a touch awkward, that first novel quality (or so I assume) – preposterously self–absorbed, the expected 'tricks' of the inexperienced hand, etc. Also undeniably well written in many parts – its failures and successes are both significant. A psychological novel of ideas, very Russian, Dostoyevskian, in short; and also exasperating, smart, and peculiar. I could s ...more
Very quick read this one and it’s been a while since I dipped my feet in Russian lit. This novel brought it all back to me and would be a great intro to anyone wanting to find out what this genre’s all about.

The novel is written under a pseudonym. There are still debates about who actually wrote it. But it contains all you want in a Russian novel: brooding self-absorption, moral decay, the hated or absent conscience of the individual, and the gradual plunge into doom and despair. Lovely!

The epon
One of the many awesome things about city living is the way we dispose of our belongings once we’ve decided we no longer want them; we put them out on the street for our neighbors to sift through. One person’s trash really can end up as another’s treasure. Intrigued by the title, I picked up Novel with Cocaine on the sidewalk. So what’s in a name? A story of a misogynistic protagonist with no redeemable qualities about himself whatsoever.

I waited to get pulled into the story, but instead found
Albertine Bejar
Brilliant & unbearable!

I read the German Translation, which manages to give the story a tremendous voice. I am really sensitive when it comes to style of writing; to me, the writer may not use the phrases of speach but has to surprise me with new words. Agajew/Levi's fantastic choice of pictures, whose descriptions often let me speechless (wonderful, playful comparisons!) allowed me to follow him all the way and get lost in this story. He mastered to ask and discuss intellectual questions in
With such an unsympathetic narrator, I was surprised to like this as much as I did. Mostly due to the skillful writing/translating. Perhaps because it isn't a contemporary addiction memoir (or possibly even a memoir at all) I was much more willing to forgive the juvenile philosophical questions being put forward and found myself admiring how well those questions were explored through the structure of the book and its three sections. It's also interesting as a book standing at the crossroads of t ...more
Julia Boechat Machado
O misterioso M. Agueiev, de quem só sabemos uma nacionalidade, um nome incerto e uma data também incerta, escreveu apenas esse livro antes de desaparecer no ar.
Romance com Cocaína é uma brilhante reflexão sobre o vício, tão bem escrito que os rumores de que tinha sido escrito por Nabokov só foram dissipados quando seu filho os negou explicitamente.
O narrador desse livro se entre à cocaína e à libertinagem não por não ter vergonha, como ele mesmo explica, mas pelo prazer de fazer aquilo de que se
Jan 21, 2008 lisa_emily rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: misanthropics
I was instantly intrigued by this book when I saw it listed in the 1001 Books to read before you die. I had never heard of this book or of its author. I discovered that there is some speculation about the author, but most likely he is lost to history.

As for the book, if there is a category called callow-scoundrels, this book would be one of the models. The narrator exhibits terrific disdain and hatefulness. The writing captures this character magnetically; I was drawn into hid world, because it
Mira Baldaranova
В началото осезателно ми липсваше музиката, която композира с фразата си Гайто Газданов. Постепенно поветствованието и стилът й ме завладяха по свой начин. Много паралели могат да бъдат направени между този роман и „Призракът на Александър Волф‘ на Газданов. И тук присъства темата за раздвоението на личността, която сблъсква два ярко противостоящи образа – тези на Маслеников и Буркевиц.

Провокативно предполагам са звучали през 30-те размишленията му за неравнопоставеността между половете, в които
Axel Ainglish
Dec 13, 2014 Axel Ainglish rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everybody from seventeen on
Recommended to Axel by: Do not need to. Is me who has been recommending it to all my readers friends.
Would not say is an ideological or philosophy novel. Is a novel about love and friendship in a teens group,that yes. But what You will possibly keep in mind, after reading this excellent work of a mistery author, is the ambiance surrounding them. At least that happened to me. There is a philosophy underlying everything that takes place, yes. One would say it was the logical one according with the times they were involved in. It presides the whole not very long work. And gives to their descent in ...more
Кремена Михайлова
Който и да е той (казват, че е спорен), авторът на този роман ме удиви с изразителната детайлност и (само)аналитичност на чувствата и проявите на главния герой. Такава детайлност, която не ми дотегна, а ми беше любопитна. Изобщо не ме отврати разкриването на най-долните кътчета на човешката душа... Имах подобни впечатления при четенето на разказите на Исак Бабел, нещо ми напомни и на Набоков. С този роман/автор се добави още един плюс към сближаването ми с руската литература.
Doesn't this Russian novel exist in English? I read it many years ago, and it was quite a sensational revelation. A truly shocking story, in the best sense of the term, written in the thirties by a mysterious writer once thought to be Nabokov. It's about the cruelties of youth, the intensity of love, the lure of drugs. Incredibly modern, or so it felt when I read it. Another novel I wish to re-read!
Very good, rumored to have been written by Nabokov under a pseudonym, but who knows. I doubt it since the voice is more confessional or trusting in a way than his traditional more-sentient-than-thou sidestep manner. No, sometimes Nabokov is good, too--I like "Pale Fire" for instance, but you gotta admit . . .

I have to confess that I have not read many Russian novels apart from the obvious authors, but inspired by new year enthusiasm to tackle some of the "1001 books before you die", I decided to tackle this.

It is very starkly written which makes it hard to relate to, or have much empathy with, the characters. Indeed, apart from the main anti-hero Vadim and his mother, the characters are very thinly drawn. I liked the themes of the book and was desperate for them to be expanded upon ( the scene with
Gabriela Molina
Este debe ser fácilmente uno de los mejores libros que he leido no este año, sino en mi vida. Una afrenta total contra los bueno y lo correcto, un desafío a la bondad y la conciencia social y su moralidad.
Kaj Peters
De schrijnende memoires van een jongeman die steeds verder afglijdt in de vergetelheid als hij niet meer in staat is om aansluiting te vinden bij anderen. Dit individuele leed is impliciet gekoppeld aan de Russische Revolutie en de opkomst van grote communistische idealen. Zo wordt het een literair meesterwerk dat voorbij zijn eigen historische context gelezen kan worden, maar dat óók een vlijmscherpe kritiek vormt op maatschappelijke ontwikkelingen van toen het geschreven werd. Het heeft iets w ...more
Boken gavs ut på ett ryskt exilförlag första gången på 1930-talet men har återupptäckts på senare år.

Boken handlar inte om homosexuella stryplekar, utan om studenten Vadim och hans eskapader i Moskva i mitten av 1910-talet.

Jag kom att tänka på Lundells Jack när jag läste den, fast Vadim är en mer bildad och mindre sympatisk person än vad Jack är. Den allmänna tonen i boken är också mycket råare.

Vadim vill ha det han vill ha när han vill ha det, och han gör vad som krävs för att få det. Det är sv
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Similar books. 1 13 Apr 02, 2013 11:01AM  
Origin of Novel with Cocaine 1 8 Apr 02, 2013 10:52AM  
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M. Ageyev is the nom-de-plume of Marc Levi. His best-known work, Novel With Cocaine was published in 1934 in the Parisian émigré publication, Numbers. Nikita Struve has alleged it to be the work of another Russian author employing a pen name, Vladimir Nabokov; this idea was debunked by Nabokov's son Dmitry in his preface to The Enchanter.

Levi's life is shrouded in mystery and conjecture. He retur
More about M. Ageyev...

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“I was terrified as only grown men and women can be when they wake in the middle of the night and begin to realize, in the absolute silence and solitude all around them, that it is not only their dream that has woken them, that it is their whole way of life.” 14 likes
“Finally, when all was said and done, the certainty (so often experienced, yet always new) that female charms, the kind that inflame the senses, are no more than kitchen smells: they tease you when you're hungry and disgust you when you've had your fill.” 9 likes
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