Finding a rewarding job, buying a home, and achieving financial stability—for decades these have been the standard markers of success for people from a variety of economic backgrounds. But in recent years, those markers have become increasingly unreachable for lower- and even middle-income populations. In The End of Aspiration, Duncan Exley—former director of the Equality Trust, an income equality–focused charity—reveals why so many people are now more likely to slide down the social ladder than climb upward. Exley draws on original research as well as firsthand accounts from people across the social spectrum, including a surgeon, an actor, and a billionaire entrepreneur. The End of Aspiration is both a manifesto for economic fairness and a wakeup call to those of us still holding on to outdated dreams.