A Lady's Guide to Selling Out

A Lady's Guide to Selling Out

by Sally Franson


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With “elements of The Bold Type, Mad Men, and The Devil Wears Prada” (Entetainment Weekly), a young woman navigates a tricky twenty-first-century career—and the trickier question of who she wants to be—in this savagely wise debut novel

Casey Pendergast is losing her way. Once a book-loving English major, Casey lands a job at a top ad agency that highly values her ability to tell a good story. Her best friend thinks she’s a sellout, but Casey tells herself that she’s just paying the bills—and she can’t help that she has champagne taste.

When her hard-to-please boss assigns her to a top-secret campaign that pairs literary authors with corporations hungry for upmarket cachet, Casey is both excited and skeptical. But as she crisscrosses America, wooing her former idols, she’s shocked at how quickly they compromise their integrity: A short-story writer leaves academia to craft campaigns for a plus-size clothing chain, a reclusive nature writer signs away her life’s work to a manufacturer of granola bars.

When she falls in love with one of her authors, Casey can no longer ignore her own nagging doubts about the human cost of her success. By the time the year’s biggest book festival rolls around in Las Vegas, it will take every ounce of Casey’s moxie to undo the damage—and, hopefully, save her own soul.

Told in an unforgettable voice, with razor-sharp observations about everything from feminism to pop culture to social media, A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out is the story of a young woman untangling the contradictions of our era and trying to escape the rat race—by any means necessary.

Praise for A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out

“Bitingly funny . . . [Sally] Franson’s snappy debut nimbly skewers the high-flying world of advertising and romance in the age of social media. . . . Franson’s irresistibly flawed heroine holds her own as she strives to find honesty, meaning, and even love in a demanding world, resulting in an addictive, escapist novel.”—Publishers Weekly

“A high-spirited heroine loses herself in a vortex of modern striving in this debut novel. . . . Come for the hilarious narration, stay for the whirlwind plot, luxuriate in the satirical gleam.”Kirkus Reviews

“A wry, observant take on career success and ambition.”New York Post

“A book lover is torn between a cushy gig and . . . well, her soul, basically.”Cosmopolitan

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399592034
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/10/2018
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 404,246
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Sally Franson grew up in Madison, Wisconsin, and was educated at Barnard College and the University of Minnesota. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, The Best American Travel Writing, and on NPR, among other places. She lives in Minneapolis.

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Excerpted from "A Lady's Guide to Selling Out"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Sally Franson.
Excerpted by permission of Random House Publishing Group.
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Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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A Lady's Guide to Selling Out: A Novel 2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous 11 months ago
Just OK,
gaele More than 1 year ago
Promoted in the blurb as a sharp and satirical look at one woman’s life as she navigates dreams and reality in the world of advertising, I was hoping for more sharpness and satire as Casey’s story unfolded. Perhaps I’m not the ‘target’ for this book – a 28 year old, navel-gazing, often shallow and superficial woman, alternating her rants between the need and futility of ‘keeping up’ on social media, interspersed with moments about the mother-daughter conflicts she endured and her overwhelming need to please. But, were I to choose, Casey would not be someone in my circle, and the inability for me to form any sort of empathy for her nearly had me putting this book aside. Unfortunately, as Franson does have some wonderful moments when books and the only real relationship that Casey has, that with her friend and former college roommate Susan. But, this is often buried behind the lack of any real morality play for Casey – sure what she does (and she sees this) is ultimately sell to create a buzz, and there are few (if any) who really deserve all of the attention and hoopla that she helps to create, but it is more a function of her disengagement and inability to find an actual stance on anything. Sure she snarks and scoffs – but those real moments, where a decision to make a choice that will change the norm, rather than gloss over it with a pretty picture and soft lighting are wholly missed, and Casey seems like a set-dresser working for an Oscar, rather than someone truly bothered by, or willing to change, the way she is operating in the world. From her awareness of the disconnects to a consistent and concerted effort to ignore any way to make a difference, even a small one, the only hope for her appears with Ben, but this is soon buried, again, beneath the desperate attempts to appear ‘clever’ and ‘in tune’ while actually ignoring and fluffing over any way to improve or change her situation, her life or the lives around her. I was hoping for sharp wit and some clever insights, more in line with a satirical approach to the tale of the times we live in – instead it was sadly soft focus without any real conviction on Casey’s part to move on or forward, content in her self-absorption and stasis. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.