Book Report: Everybody Rise
What’s The Buzz?: Everybody Rise is one of those books that was making the press rounds this summer as a delightful, dishy beach read. Not only that, but author (and New York Times reporter) Stephanie Clifford apparently nabbed a seven-figure advance for writing this fictional expose of the East Coast’s 1%, and the movie rights were immediately snapped up too.
What’s The Plot: Evelyn Beegan is a twentysomething living in New York City on the eve of the 2008 financial crash. Her father is a well-to-do lawyer that earned all of his millions himself, while her mother is an upward-gazing social climber that has also pushed for her daughter to have the social status she could only dream of. This leads to a bit of a chain reaction, as Evelyn gets a job that requires her to hobnob with her former private school classmates, which in turn eventually makes her buy into this upper crusty world more than she’d imagined to. But like any good society send-up, Evelyn becomes the heart of not one but multiple scandals that make her fall as quickly as she rose.
What’s The Genre?: I’d peg Everybody Rise as a book that falls squarely between literary fiction and ‘women’s fiction’ or chick lit as it’s sometimes called. The subject matter is a bit Gossip Girl-esque (it actually reminded me the most of Curtis Sittenfeld’s Prep and American Wife) with a dash of Gatsby thrown in, but the writing itself is more formal and elegant than a typical chick lit novel. It’s not overly serious though – it’s really just an intriguing glimpse into this enviable if bewildering world of America’s elite.
What’s The Number One Feeling I’ll Have While Reading This?: Honestly? I found myself cringing a lot while reading Everybody Rise. But in this case, that’s a good thing. Evelyn’s wannabe pedigree is built on a house of matches, and watching her both construct it and all the little threats spark around it is riveting, if a touch gut-wrenching here and there. It’s very much a story about how far are you willing to go to ‘make it’ in New York – and Evelyn goes further, perhaps to insane lengths, than anyone you’ve likely read about before. Except maybe Jay Gatsby.
Who Should Read This Book?: If you liked any of the titles mentioned in this post, you’ll probably enjoy this one. It’s an interesting look at an interesting social realm 99.9% of us will never get to experience or be a part of – although by the end you may be thinking, thank heavens. It’s also a fun gift idea for any of your gal pals looking for a new fix this fall.
As always, I’ve got a copy of Everybody Rise to giveaway! Here’s how to enter:
1) First & foremost: you must be a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide to enter this giveaway. It’s as simple as finding ‘The Gift of Gab’ box in the righthand column and dropping in your email or clicking follow. Then, tell me in the comments below by October 7, 2015 – why are you interested in reading this engaging read?
2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around October 8, 2015 to select the winner, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.
3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible for this promotion.
4) Bonus Entry: Follow Raincoast Books on Twitter, tag them and me (@cdngiftguide) in a Tweet about why you want to read this intriguing book! Post a link to your Tweet below in a separate comment to earn yourself an extra entry into the draw.
5) Bonus Entry #2: Add this book to your to-read list on GoodReads, and leave a link back to the page it’s on below in a separate comment to earn yourself another bonus entry.