• Impostor Syndrome

  • A Novel
  • By: Kathy Wang
  • Narrated by: Lauren Fortgang
  • Length: 10 hrs and 35 mins
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (127 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A sharp and prescient novel about women in the workplace, the power of Big Tech, and the looming threat of foreign espionage from Kathy Wang, “a skilled satirist of the northern California dream” (Harper’s Bazaar)

In 2006, Julia Lerner is living in Moscow, a recent university graduate in computer science, when she’s recruited by Russia’s largest intelligence agency. By 2018, she’s in Silicon Valley as COO of Tangerine, one of America’s most famous technology companies. In between her executive management (make offers to promising start-ups, crush them and copy their features if they refuse); self promotion (check out her latest op-ed in the WSJ, on Work/Life Balance 2.0); and work in gender equality (transfer the most annoying females from her team), she funnels intelligence back to the motherland. But now Russia's asking for more, and Julia’s getting nervous.

Alice Lu is a first generation Chinese American whose parents are delighted she’s working at Tangerine (such a successful company!). Too bad she’s slogging away in the lower echelons, recently dumped, and now sharing her expensive two-bedroom apartment with her cousin Cheri, a perennial “founder’s girlfriend”. One afternoon, while performing a server check, Alice discovers some unusual activity, and now she’s burdened with two powerful but distressing suspicions: Tangerine’s privacy settings aren’t as rigorous as the company claims they are, and the person abusing this loophole might be Julia Lerner herself. 

The closer Alice gets to Julia, the more Julia questions her own loyalties. Russia may have placed her in the Valley, but she's the one who built her career; isn’t she entitled to protect the lifestyle she’s earned? Part enthralling cat-and-mouse chase, part sharp and hilarious satire, Impostor Syndrome is a shrewdly observed examination of women in tech, Silicon Valley hubris, and the rarely fulfilled but ever-attractive promise of the American Dream.

©2021 Kathy Wang (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Impostor Syndrome

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

borrrrrriiiiiinnnnngggggg

I'm not sure how this got 4 stars... The story is incredibly boring and the characters are annoying and unlikeable. Wouldn't recommend spending 10 hours on this.

2 people found this helpful

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Not worth the time!

Ending is horrible. Cuts off as soon as the story really begins!!! And the author must not be a fan of California - the people, cities etc…. A huge disappointment.

1 person found this helpful

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There is not much to this story

I was waiting for it to intensify but it never did. Feels like there should be another book to finish the story.

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Fun and entertaining!

This is the perfect summer book!! Just enough for a summer nibble. I would have given 5 stars but I felt like some of the characters deserved more of a story line.

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