Kapitoil Sometimes you do not truly observe something until you study it in reverse writes Karim Issar upon arrival to New York City from Qatar in Fluent in numbers logic and business jargon yet often

  • Title: Kapitoil
  • Author: Teddy Wayne
  • ISBN: 9780061873218
  • Page: 350
  • Format: Paperback
  • Sometimes you do not truly observe something until you study it in reverse, writes Karim Issar upon arrival to New York City from Qatar in 1999 Fluent in numbers, logic, and business jargon yet often baffled by human connection, the young financial wizard soon creates a computer program named Kapitoil that predicts oil futures and reaps record profits for his company.At Sometimes you do not truly observe something until you study it in reverse, writes Karim Issar upon arrival to New York City from Qatar in 1999 Fluent in numbers, logic, and business jargon yet often baffled by human connection, the young financial wizard soon creates a computer program named Kapitoil that predicts oil futures and reaps record profits for his company.At first an introspective loner adrift in New York s social scenes, he anchors himself to his legendary boss Derek Schrub and Rebecca, a sensitive, disillusioned colleague who may understand him better than he does himself Her influence, and his father s disapproval of Karim s Americanization, cause him to question the moral implications of Kapitoil, moving him toward a decision that will determine his future, his firm s, and to whom and where his loyalties lie.

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      Published :2020-02-16T03:15:44+00:00

    About “Teddy Wayne”

    1. Teddy Wayne

      Teddy Wayne is the author of the novels The Love Song of Jonny Valentine Free Press, Feb 2013 and Kapitoil Harper Perennial and is the recipient of a 2011 Whiting Writers Award, an NEA Creative Writing Fellowship, the 2011 PEN Robert W Bingham Prize runner up, and a finalist for the 2011 New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award finalist and the 2011 Dayton Literary Peace Prize He is a graduate of Harvard and Washington University in St Louis, where he taught fiction and creative nonfiction writing His work has appeared in The New Yorker, the New York Times, Vanity Fair, McSweeney s, the Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere He lives in New York.

    652 thoughts on “Kapitoil”

    1. ARC from publisher/authorThis book surprised me. It sat there, all harmless looking, in it's brown and red and black design, with it's runaway drop of oil very nicely mirroring the Empire State building, creating an inky rorschach-like design.Now, I am certainly not above googling words when I struggle to spell them - and rorschach was one I definitely needed assistance with, so try to imagine the tiny little 'vibration' that coursed through me when I saw that rorschach was defined as " a psycho [...]

    2. Kapitoil works best as a refreshingly non-sensationalistic look at American capitalism. This is a likeable book with a likeable main character, Karim, who is equal parts objective and open to the people he encounters in his brief fews months as a young financial genius working for a New York securities firm desperate for a profit boost. Karim invents a computer program that accurately predicts oil futures and makes his company, Schrub Equities, a ton of new cash. In a sad twist, the program is b [...]

    3. My friend Teddy wrote this book! And it's definitely a surreal experience to read a book written by a friend (this was my first time doing so), but probably the best compliment I can give is that I kept forgetting that Teddy was the author, because I was so caught up in the story itself. I read the book in one day, and I found myself thinking like the narrator even after I was done reading. The book seems fairly light when you read it, but it left a haunting feeling that stayed with me for a cou [...]

    4. Karim Issar, a computer programmer from Qatar, joins the New York office of the conglomerate he works for, Schrub Equities, to fix the Y2K bug in their systems. Painfully aware of his uncertainties about many American idioms and cultural gaps, Karim tries to expand a social network in the city, despite Asperger’s-like tendencies to analyze everything in terms of efficiencies rather than emotions. On his own time, he develops a program called Kapitoil that very successfully tracks oil prices ba [...]

    5. It's hard to read _Kapitoil_ without falling for Karim, the understated, memorable narrator who wins you over in his particular way. I found myself thinking about all things "Karim-esque." This, of course, is a testament to the novel's success, that your own world feels slightly different as a result of a character you encounter. Karim's voice is executed perfectly, in a way that sheds light on contemporary America. New York in 1999 is captured through various lenses (technology, the economy, et [...]

    6. I picked this up because a blogger whose taste in books I respect recommended it. Karim may not be my new favorite character in recent reading, but I'm glad to have read his struggle.Karim's voice is unique and interesting, as an outsider to America and life, but an insider on programming and business. He knows his strengths and weaknesses to a fault, and we follow his story during a period of a few months at the end of 1999, when he is revolutionizing the oil futures market by writing a program [...]

    7. This is the story of Karim Issar, who comes to the US from Qatar in 1999 to work as a computer programmer for a financial company in NYC. Karim was hired to help with the Y2K problem (heh, remember that?), but he invents a program that uses algorithms based on current events to predict fluctuations in oil commodities -- and invest/sell accordingly to make tons of money. This book was easy and fun to read, and I enjoyed reading it. But at the end I had this feeling like "my god, was this written [...]

    8. Great book. Karim is an entertaining character whether he is buying a juicer or talking about computer programming. The plot lines about Kapitoil, life in Qatar, Mr. Schrub and the auxiliary characters are all very engaging but what kept me reading was Karim's evolving relationship with Rebecca. Kapitoil doesn't read like a first novel at all. I hope to see more from Teddy Wayne.----------------From the Giveaway description - "Sometimes you do not truly observe something until you study it in re [...]

    9. Holding aside my discomfort with the ventroliquism at the center of the novel (I can't help feeling it's "OK" to do things with Arabs that we wouldn't do with others -- e.g how would we feel about a NYC white prep school/Harvard grad writing a comic novel about an immigrant from Asia who talked like Charlie Chan, or a poor black kid from the South who speaks in dialect), I also didn't care for the plot. The story's arc is heavily telegraphed from the very beginning, and watching the western busi [...]

    10. Outstanding debut. A simple stranger in a strange land story about Karim, an Islamic computer programmer from Qatar who is brought to New York by a financial firm to work on the Y2K bug. Through the wonders of literature he writes a computer program in a couple of weeks which continuously scans the Internet to make predictions about the oil futures market (one wonders if Wayne forgets what the Internet was like in 1999, as we are never told whether Karim still uses dial-up, or wether he prefers [...]

    11. Hmmmm. Just finished this one. And its PS set of interviews w author etc which PS gave an appreciable bump to my estimation of the book. In general, I thought it a fine read though not a great one. Booklist praises this novel as "assured". I'd agree. It's very assured and withal engaging. But assuredness, while arguably a necessary condition for novelistic quality, is -- I'd say -- not a sufficient one. There is much to admire in this novel, and I'd definitely read other books by its author. But [...]

    12. Well here's another instance of a book I would have NEVER picked up on my own, but which in fact I quite liked. From the back cover synopsis I gleaned stuff about computers, money, oil, a middle eastern immigrant, so a bit out of my comfort zone. But this story isn't really about any of those things, well it is, but more fish out of water than anything. Because of his unsteady grasp of English the main character talks like an autistic person which provides for some hilarious moments but also som [...]

    13. I spotted this book today at the library, having never heard of it, and decided on a whim to read the first page or two. Eight hours later - with a few interruptions for some work, some chores, dinner, bathing the kids, and putting them to sleep - I finished it, and I'm sorry that it's over. I can't remember the last time that happened.

    14. A wonderful read and a brief glimpse into the mind and world of Karim Issar who comes to America for a job at Schrub Industries working on the Y2k computer issues. The novel is told in diary form in a perfectly told pre-9/11. What works is Wayne's spot on dialog and a interesting point of view on American culture. One of the year's best.

    15. This is definitely my new favorite novel. I can't stop talking about it. If you liked The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, or if you just like a unique first-person narrative, or a page-turner, or one of those novels that's packed with lines that light up the page, read this. It's amazing.

    16. Charming story of self discovery. Narrated in an interesting fashion, with just enough twists to keep things interesting. Truly a "Pre-9/11" novel about New York, definitely worth reading, if you're looking for something more contemporary.

    17. This book was great fun to read. I couldn't put it down. It's a mix of techy-thriller and love story in the form of a diary, about a man who's going to own the world before he's 30.

    18. tkreviews/#/kapitoil/4You might recognize Teddy Wayne’s name as a frequent contributor to the humor section of McSweeney’s Internet Tendency (and the author of two of my favorite short pieces from the site: “Feedback from James Joyce’s Submission of Ulysses to His Creative-Writing Workshop” and “Parallels Between My Living Through Two Years of Middle School and Two Terms of the Bush Presidency.”) According to the note in the back of his slightly-more-serious but just-as-wonderful [...]

    19. Writers are supposed to write what they know. Millions of people spend all day fiddling with numbers on screens, and yet the Great American White Collar Novel remains unwritten. Kapitoil is a good effort, though. Karim, the protagonist, is easy to get among with—there is usually a rule in fiction that anyone who lives in New York needs to be a colossal jerk or a tragic victim thereof. His narrator’s voice is distinctive without getting annoying, and it’s pitch-perfect Professional English- [...]

    20. It's hard to find a single drop of oil in "Kapitoil", but this doesn't mean you shouldn't read this novel.Yes, I'm talking to you bankers, speculators, brokers, financial advisers, oligarchs, sheiks, Russian PMs and Iranian presidents, spin doctors, politicians, entrepreneurs, capitalists and anti-capitalists, environmentalists, exploited and exploiters of this world.I repeat: this book doesn't definitely smell of crude oil. No oil drums involved. No Brent Crude classification diagrams. No gas w [...]

    21. You might expect a character like Karim Issar, who corrects others' grammar, who doesn't get humor, whose language is sprinkled with techno-financial business geek speak, and who lays out his decision-making processes in painstaking, ultra-logical detail, to not be the most likable fellow you've ever read. But you'd be wrong — Karim is actually a wonderfully sympathetic, interesting character. And his story is equally sympathetic, interesting, and fun.Karim's story begins in the fall of 1999 w [...]

    22. The year is 1999, and Karim Issar has just arrived in New York City from his native Qatar. He’s a “cream of the cream” programmer contracted to work on Schrub Equities’ Y2K project through the end of the year. (Side note: My mom was on the Y2K team for Seafirst Bank. I regrettably dressed as a Y2K bug for Halloween that year. I was 14.) Pretty soon, he starts devising programs that he thinks will be useful to the company, the culmination of which is Kapitoil. After realizing that current [...]

    23. (some spoilers)This book was recommended to me by a friend (thanks abby!) who is friends with the author. She described it as 'the pre-9/11 novel, capturing the angst and anxiety of Y2K global computer failings and the financial bubble burst'. And I don't disagree with her there, but the way I'd describe it 'come for a y2k snapshot, stay for the human to human connection of two disparate people from two disparate backgrounds'. Yea, won't see that as a taglineywhere.Wayne's had his share of prais [...]

    24. this has got to be one of the most unique character pieces i’ve ever read! Karim’s idiosyncratic, techno-savvy character and his story will have you laughing out loud in Wayne’s excellent debut novel."Business manuals explain how valuable it is to have a sense of humor, so I am studying how others produce jokes, such as making a statement that is clearly the reverse of what you truly mean and using a tone of voice that indicates the reversal."in the months leading up to the turn of the cen [...]

    25. A bright young man from Doha, Qatar, Karim Issar, comes to New York City in the period before 9/11 to do computer work for Schrub Equities, a prominent Wall Street firm. This entertaining, charming, and affecting novel presents Karim’s journal entries, in which he mangles the English language for a while (although he’s a diligent learner) and shares his discoveries as he attempts to navigate the work and social milieu and decipher the idioms of daily conversation. At the same time, Karim sta [...]

    26. Throughout the first part of this book, I wasn't too thrilled with it. But the farther along in the story I went, the more I liked the book and - especially - the more I liked Karim, the narrator and main character. The book grew on me similarly to how Karim describes liking modern art - the whole doesn't look that spectacular but as you pay more attention to the details, more of the meaning evolves. Karim is a banker/computer geek from Qatar who is in the US on an internship with a large broker [...]

    27. I won this book as a first read from this site. Must admit, it feels pretty cool to get a book that isn't final and is still in the editing process.Overall, I found this book to be pretty funny and overall a great read. I work in the oil industry, and was hoping for a bit more expansion on the whole KapitOil platform that the main character Karim creates, but I can't really hold that against the author - most people would find that stuff incredibly boring.Kapitoil is less about oil and more abou [...]

    28. This book knocked me out of my chair. It was excellent, it was magical, it was real, it was heartbreaking. It really took me by surprise. It felt like a combination of Life of Pi, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, and "Girls" (HBO). And yet far from being derivative it really shines and sings on its own merit. It almost sort of felt like a play. It lent itself well to reading it in 10-20 minute installments.Life of Pi, because the narration style is so well intentioned, earnest, [...]

    29. This was a very good book about a muslim computer wiz who is brought from Qatar to America by a financial company to get its computers ready for the switch from 1999 to 2000. Just being reminded of how that was supposed to be a huge catastrophe for all the computers of the world was an interesting background for the story. Its interesting how what can be hyped up as a potential major calamity can be almost completely forgotten 10 years later. However, the book does not delve too deeply into this [...]

    30. I read this book because of the 2010 recommendation from Jonathan Franzen in the Daily Beast, which I actually just stumbled across recently.I really enjoyed this book for its story, but even more so because of the characters that I felt Teddy Wayne developed so well. Karim was extremely likable and I felt really invested in his navigation of a foreign territory, being America in general, and more closely its corporate practices in the financial industry. I also enjoyed watching Rebecca navigate [...]

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