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Serotonin

Narrated by: John Sackville
Length: 8 hrs and 10 mins
4.1 out of 5 stars (100 ratings)

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Summary

Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2020

Penguin presents the audio edition of Serotonin by Michel Houellebecq. 

The most important French book of the year. 

Dissatisfied and discontent, Florent-Claude Labrouste begrudgingly works as an engineer for the Ministry of Agriculture and is in a self-imposed dysfunctional relationship with a younger woman. When he discovers her ongoing infidelity, he decides to abandon his life in Paris and return to the Normandy countryside of his youth. There he contemplates lost loves and past happiness as he struggles to embed himself in a world that no longer holds any joy for him. 

His only relief comes in the form of a pill - white, oval, small. Captorix is a new brand of antidepressant, recently released for public consumption, which works by altering the brain’s release of serotonin. With social unrest intensifying around him, and his own depression deepening, Florent-Claude turns to this new medication in the hope that he will find something to live for. 

Written by one of the most provocative and prophetic novelists of his generation, Serotonin is at once a devastating story of solitude, longing and individual suffering and a powerful criticism of modern life.

©2019 Michel Houellebecq (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic reviews

"One cannot be said to be keeping abreast of contemporary literature without reading Houellebecq's work." (Karl Ove Knausgaard, New York Times)

What listeners say about Serotonin

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Excellent

Great novel. Superb narration. First class work from the author and narrator. A very erudite tome.

5 people found this helpful

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We need more of Houellebecq

This is a great modern novel. We need to have more of this author available in audible. The sooner the better.

3 people found this helpful

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No more Houellebecq for me!

A truly awful piece about an arrogant middle aged bloke who is obcessed with his dick. Crude and clumsy, the narrative tries to shock using beastiality to degrade one female character, then describes another conquest as fat and alcoholic but still up for sex. There isn't much storyline and what there was of one, was constantly interrupted with the narrator's recollections of sex. The whole thing was boring and pointless and I didn't listen to more than a couple of hours if it. Glad I didn't pay for it.

2 people found this helpful

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Delightfully dark.

One of the darkest things I've read and also one of the funniest books I've read. There's a part where he suggests that Skype is even more intolerable than.... well, it's dark. Fantastic.

1 person found this helpful

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Self-consciously formulaic and predictably dark

Houellebecq has produced another novel that attacks bourgeois sensibilities in a self consciously formulaic manner that will automatically have it identified by some as a masterpiece of contemporary literature. The detachment from his dysfunctional protagonist in an equally dysfunctional society results in a work that ticks all the right boxes. It's so easy to create in this way through presenting the reader with images of darkness and negativity as reality. The issue as I see it is that Houellebecq becomes part of the societal problem that he is supposedly providing a critique of. In fact, he could be a novelist in his own imaginary, dystopian world. Read if you wish, consume and then forget. This clever, well-crafted masterly book isn't worth the effort: it's quite easy to be drawn in by its post-modernist critique of a society in decay as painted by Houellebecq but in reality that society does not exist. The book is a lie, pornography masquerading as art. Love still thrives but not in the mind of Houellebecq.

3 people found this helpful

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racist.

Apparently Asians cant blush although our "psychological mechanism exists but the result tends towards the shade of ochre" - ch.6

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great but depressing

great book some what boring and pointless but i think thats the idea. alot to be said want to read more by the writer

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A good distasteful book

One may not like the narrator (I refer to the first person narrator of the story, not the reader of the book), one is not perhaps intended to. One may not like the theme of the book, perhaps this too is not intended. But one is compelled to stay with this work to the end, like a massive bitter rubbery green olive. Like a massive bitter rubbery green olive, this book is highly memorable, and unpleasant. Recommended.

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  • Kenneth Malone
  • 22-11-19

Buy a pack of Lucky Strike no filters and enjoy.

Delightfully dark. Really enjoyed it even if I may not have fully understood it... Great narrator. Great approximations of a mans stream of conciousness ruminations

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kristian
  • 27-09-19

Michel Houellebecq is back !

Serotonin is a nihilistic masterpiece, that will provoke and offend a lot of people - particularly Houellebecq´s opponents from the far left, the feminist movement, the political correct and the entire offensive industry.It's dark, sarkastic, rough, perverted and totally hilarious.

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  • Dr.
  • 16-07-20

meh trying too much to be Houellebecq!

disappointment when compared to ( atom or primary element ls). he didn't gross me, annoy me, even entertain me enough