The perfect book stays on your mind even when you’re not reading it. You spend your day thinking about the plot and the characters and looking forward to reading the next chapter.
Everybody Rise is New York Times reporter Stephanie Clifford’s debut novel, and it’s one of those books. Even though its release date isn’t until August 18th, the film rights have already been picked up by the producer of The Devil Wears Prada.
The book is set in 2006 in the Manhattan of the young and glamorous. Evelyn Beegan is determined to join the city’s elite, and integrates herself into their lives, social groups and summer cottages. She attempts to pass for old money herself, describing imagined childhood memories of debutante balls and privileged connections. Then, as her father is indicted for bribery, she must contend with her family’s downfall as she tries to keep up appearances in her new life.
In celebration of Everybody Rise, I was invited to a special press event. We began the day pampering ourselves with blow outs at DryBar.
You may find this hard to believe, but it was actually my first time at DryBar! I figured it would just be a standard blow out, but instead you’re given a book of different looks that you can choose from.
I chose “The Manhattan” look because it seemed perfect for Everybody Rise.
Ta-da! I’m so Manhattan!
After the glamorous blow outs, we headed to afternoon tea at The Plaza to meet with the author herself, Stephanie Clifford.
First, let me say that afternoon tea at The Plaza is just as lovely as you would expect. An important scene in the book takes place there, so the setting was especially poignant, and echoed the wealth and privilege highlighted in the novel.
Since we were lucky enough to read Everybody Rise before the release date, we had dozens of questions for Stephanie on what went into its creation.
As Stephanie said during our tea, most media portrayals of New York City are glamorous, and make city living look easy and fabulous. Everybody Rise more accurately reflects the challenges of living on a budget in an expensive city that has an extremely high standard for clothes, makeup and appearances.
I was particularly impressed with how Stephanie was able to balance writing a novel with a full-time job at the New York Times. Her advice? If you want to write a book, just get started, because there will never be a convenient time.
Stephanie woke up every morning for five years and wrote from 6-8am. Even on the days when the novel wasn’t working, or she couldn’t think of anything to write, she would give herself that time to devote to it.
One of the questions that I asked Stephanie was what future moment did she fantasize about to get her through the hard days? Was it finding out that she would be published, or seeing her book in a store?
I loved her answer. She said that her inspiration was envisioning the moment when she would see her book being read on the subway. So as you’re commuting to and from work, and you see someone reading Everybody Rise, think of Stephanie and her huge accomplishment. Maybe even tweet her a picture, just for fun!
Everybody Rise will be the next book that everyone is talking about, so be sure to buy or download your copy on August 18th!
Or, if you’re feeling lucky, I’m doing a giveaway!
You can enter by following me on Twitter and tweeting me your most fabulous New York City moment with the hashtag #EverybodyRise.
Or you can enter by following me on Facebook and commenting with your most fabulous New York City moment with the hashtag #EverybodyRise.
The winner will be chosen on August 28th!
Good luck, and enjoy your new favorite book!