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Everybody Rise: A Novel
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Everybody Rise: A Novel

4.0 7
by Stephanie Clifford

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Chosen as one of Summer's Best Books by People Magazine
Featured in Time Magazine's Summer Reading
Entertainment Weekly's Summer Must List
Good Housekeeping Beach Reads Feature

“Finally, a novel that admits ‘making it’ isn't just a makeover away.” -Vanity Fair


Chosen as one of Summer's Best Books by People Magazine
Featured in Time Magazine's Summer Reading
Entertainment Weekly's Summer Must List
Good Housekeeping Beach Reads Feature

“Finally, a novel that admits ‘making it’ isn't just a makeover away.” -Vanity Fair

Twenty-six-year-old Evelyn Beegan intended to free herself from the influence of her social-climbing mother, who propelled her through prep school and onto New York’s stately Upper East Side. Evelyn has long felt like an outsider to her privileged peers, but when she lands a job at a social-network startup aimed at the elite, she has no choice but to infiltrate their world. Soon she finds herself navigating the promised land of Adirondack camps, Hamptons beach houses, and, of course, the island of Manhattan itself. Intoxicated by the wealth, access, and influence of her new set, Evelyn can’t help but try to pass as old money herself. But when the lies become more tangled, she grasps with increasing desperation as the ground beneath her begins to give way.

A sparkling debut that is “full of ambition and grit” (Emma Straub), Stephanie Clifford's Everybody Rise is a story about identity and loss, and how sometimes we have to lose everything to find our way back to who we really are.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Full of ambition and grit. Clifford provides sharp-eyed access to a moneyed world and its glamorous inhabitants.” —Emma Straub, New York Times bestselling author of The Vacationers

“A masterful tale of social climbing and entrenched class distinctions . . . Tense, hilarious, and bursting with gorgeous language. Stephanie Clifford is a 21st century Edith Wharton.” —J. Courtney Sullivan, New York Times bestselling author of The Engagements and Maine

“A superb debut. Everybody Rise is a 21st century version of a grand 19th century novel--a smart, moving tale of class, ambition, and identity.” —Malcolm Gladwell

“A compulsive, up-close-and-personal read about the first cracks in the greed-and-bleed U.S. economy that went flying off the rails so spectacularly a short time later.” —Library Journal

Publishers Weekly
The upstart heroine of this debut novel by New York Times reporter Clifford wages a one-woman assault on the old-money snobbery of the Upper East Side, before the Wall Street stock market crash of 2008. Evelyn Beegan, a new-money 26-year-old whose social-climber mother finagled her into the right prep schools, sells her soul in order to succeed in her first job at a social networking site called People Like Us. In order to win over those at the center of the young Upper East Side elite so she can use their names on the PLU site, Evelyn uses her connections from school to wheedle invitations to Adirondack camps and charity events. She spends more money than she has and lies about her own background as she claws to the top of the social heap, shedding integrity and eventually a very nice young man on her way up. Evelyn scores big when she befriends socialite Camilla Rutherford, who gives her access to her parents’ friends and prestigious charity balls, until Evelyn’s deception and the expense of keeping up appearances threatens to overwhelm Evelyn. While this novel displays none of the melancholy irony of the Sondheim song for which it is named, it is an amusing page-turning beach read. But if the author is trying to suggest that after 2008, class and the UES no longer hold sway, her argument is thin. (Aug.)
Library Journal
★ 04/15/2015
Twentysomething Evelyn Beegan has just enough social-climbing bona fides (prep school, good college, a somewhat prominent attorney father, a somewhat pedigreed mother) to reach the fringes of 2006 Manhattan high society. When she lands a job with People Like Us, a start-up social media site for superrich young New Yorkers, she is charged with quickly increasing membership. She uses her school friends, her minimal connections, her quick mind, her dogged research skills, and her facility for lying to gain entry into the charity events, regattas, debuts, and stunningly excessive shopping and dining experiences that define the lives of her targets. The deeper she gets, the more she needs, and eventually she pays a price more terrible than the massive debts she runs up trying to buy her way in. Clifford, an award-winning reporter at the New York Times, has penned either a how-to (how-don't?) manual or a cautionary tale for those seeking access to this rarefied world. VERDICT A compulsive, up-close-and-personal read about the first cracks in the greed-and-bleed U.S. economy that went flying off the rails so spectacularly a short time later. [See Prepub Alert, 2/23/15.]—Beth Andersen, formerly with Ann Arbor Dist. Lib., MI
Kirkus Reviews
A young woman who works at a tech startup tries to shoehorn her way into New York's high society. The most notable thing about Evelyn Beegan's life so far is that she went to Sheffield Academy, a New England boarding school where the vibe is so preppy that her social-climbing mother, Barbara, bought a used 1985 Mercedes once she realized "none of the old-money mothers would deign to drive a fresh-off-the-lot BMW like the Beegans had shown up in." (Clifford, a New York Times reporter, has a good eye for class markers.) Now Evelyn works at People Like Us, a social networking site trying to recruit "the elite's elite," and she's busy using Sheffield friends such as Preston Hacking, "a Winthrop on his mother's side," to insinuate herself into the exclusive swirl of charity balls and weekends in the Adirondacks where she can engage new members. But it's more than business to Evelyn: she genuinely admires luminaries like Camilla Rutherford, "the clear center of young New York," and concocts ever more elaborate lies about her own background in an attempt to befriend them. Hasn't Evelyn ever heard of Google? It shouldn't be hard for people to find out she was never a debutante in Baltimore, among other things. Having her father, a lawyer who specializes in suing pharmaceutical companies, indicted for bribery isn't a secret she'll be able to keep forever, either. There's been a big debate in the past few years about whether literary characters need to be likable, and of course many great books feature protagonists you wouldn't want to befriend. But Evelyn spends so much time doing such bone-headed things, and for a goal that seems so dated, that's it's hard to work up any interest in what happens to her. Clifford's debut tries to be a Bonfire of the Vanities for our time but doesn't make it.

Product Details

St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

As a New York Times reporter, Loeb-award winning journalist Stephanie Clifford covered courts, business and media. A magna cum laude graduate of Harvard, she grew up in Seattle and lives in Brooklyn. Everybody Rise is her first book.

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Everybody Rise 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a great read. I couldn't put it down.
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings Evelyn grew up just on the outskirts of everything, she went to the fancy prep school, but wasn't in the in crowd. She lived in New York City, but just one block away from where you were "supposed" to live, so when she gets the chance to be IN she may go overboard and go ALL IN! Evelyn was a great character to follow into this world. I thought her perspective was fun, not unique, but at least fun! I thought the main plot of her working for an exclusive Facebook or MySpace was a great way to get her to reunite with her prep school alums and give her a reason to return to that world. When a book doesn't have a ton of action, the plot and characters must be enough and this one had enough for a summer afternoon of reading.
Holly More than 1 year ago
Everybody Rise is the story of what happens to one woman and her desire to be something that she isn't. Evelyn Beegan is a young 26 year old who lives in Manhatten and just landed a job for recruiting high society members into a social media site for the elite. As Evelyn is lured into this high class world, her family life is far from it with her father, a class-action lawyer just getting indicted for bribery. With Evelyn trying to keep this a secret from her new friends, it all leads to a major downfall about secrets that she has been hiding from everyone and it will force her to realize who her true friends are. For the life of me, I don't understand how this book can be hilarious when it's sad to see somebody not having that much self worth of themselves to do the things that Evelyn did. I could never do what Evelyn did but I could see where it lead her to do those things from what her parents were doing at the time and a mother who cared more about class than what her own daughter was going through. I do have to give Stephanie credit for writing a book that makes you stay glued to it just to see how it all ends! Thank You to Stephanie Clifford for writing a novel that makes me glad to be who I am and curious to see what is to come from you in the future! I received this book from the BookSparks Summer Reading Challenge 2016 in exchange for a honest review.
bookloverfl12 More than 1 year ago
Oh the struggles of maintaining your status, especially if you are new money. If you are new money, you are held to a higher standard and feel compelled to maintain that image. But what do you do when that new money is now called attention to and that reputation is called to question? I enjoyed the simplistic high society storyline and was pleased that it wasn't an over-the-top/extreme one. I was not a fan of the narrator of the CD book but I enjoyed the storyline.
elam More than 1 year ago
I was very impressed by Ms. Clifford's writing and superbly vivid characters - this is the kind of book where the characters really stay with you after you put the book down. I read it in one sitting because I could not put it down and definitely recommend it.
Xkoqueen More than 1 year ago
Engrossing as a social commentary I received a complimentary copy from St. Martin Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Everybody Rise is wonderful read. An interesting piece of literature and social commentary, and like Edith Wharton, author Stephanie Clifford gives readers a pitiful interloper to hate and love. Evelyn Beegan and her mother, Babs, are social climbers. Evelyn has never felt like she fit in, and Babs has always been desperately trying to be accepted in the next rung up the social ladder. I didn’t “get” Dale, Evelyn’s father; I couldn’t decide if he was brilliant and obtuse or a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I digress as the story is really about Evelyn. Evelyn gets wrapped up in her job at a super elitist version of Facebook and slips into the “it” crowd of the uber-wealthy of New York. She doesn’t have the means to keep up with this crowd, and while her father’s career is tanking, she becomes takes on every bad habit known to mankind as the role model for how not to manage your life. At first, I thought this book was a trite, superficial story about the lovely upper socio-economic class that all of the little people wish to be like. It was all that in a way, but the book became much more interesting when I realized it was really a commentary about the ridiculousness of those superficial, elitist socialites and the stupidity of their hangers-on/wannabe friends. Evelyn was much more interesting after her comeuppance and free fall to a subpar-existence from her private school upbringing. Evelyn’s story in Everybody Rise is an engrossing slow-motion train wreck that you cannot look away from. Keep reading as the figurative body count rises and Evelyn’s life sinks into a deeper and deeper hole. In the end, you’ll see Everybody Rise as a brilliant read.
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
3.5 stars. While I don't think this was an extraordinary debut, as described in the blurbs, it was okay. I wanted to put it down several times during the first third part of it, but I stayed with it. It did get better, but I didn't feel as though it got great. I mean, I was rooting for Evelyn all the way, but I knew there was a train wreck on the way. I'm surprised she wasn't actually kicked out of her apartment. She kept that facade up longer than I thought she would. There were some fun parts in here and lots of sad parts. I gave the book 3.5 stars because 3 stars is what I thought the first part was and 4 stars is what I thought the last part was. While it finally did start become entertaining, it still felt kind of unbelievable. Kind of like the author was forcing it on me or maybe I'm just overthinking it. As for recommending it? I just got to say, come to your own decision. It's one of those books your either gonna love it or hate it. Or in my case, it was just okay. Thanks St. Martin Press and Net Galley for allowing me to read and review this book. I'm still on the fence about recommending it.