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The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  706 ratings  ·  104 reviews
A hilarious contemporary retelling of the classic society novel, VANITY FAIR, featuring the irrepressible Becky Sharp

Beautiful, brilliant, ruthless – nothing can stop Becky Sharp.

Becky Sharp has big dreams and no connections. Determined to swap the gutters of Soho for the glamorous, exclusive world behind the velvet rope, Becky will do anything to achieve fame, r

Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published September 1st 2018 by HarperCollins
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Roman Clodia
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
This modern updating of Vanity Fair is huge fun. Manning follows Thackeray’s plot exactly even keeping the same names for her characters: Becky and Amelia now meet on Big Brother; George is a Tory MP, the Pitt Crawleys are an acting dynasty, and Steyne is a Murdoch-alike media mogul. Funniest is Jos Sedley, re-located to California and owner of a power ball company (“How are your balls, Jos?”), his bulk now due to being over-muscled.

Manning skewers contemporary life through Becky’s Instagram fam
This was entertaining in an undemanding way but not really for me as I don't follow celebrity news or people on Instagram (unless they're posting pictures of books!). I didn't care much for, or about, any of the characters except perhaps Dame Matilda, although she was clearly a shameless rip-off of Dame Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey.

I found the name dropping of products a little tiresome and found the 'head hopping' in places rather distracting. It may be petty but it also really annoyed me that
Rachel Gilbey
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It had been a while since I last read a book by Sarra Manning but this book has certainly reminded my why I enjoy her books - even when I wasn't reading it my mind was on the characters and wondering just what they would get up to next.

I'm not sure how much I can say I particularly liked the characters or Becky herself but I was intrigued by them and with the authors clever writing, I certainly wanted to continue seeing how the story would play out. I love books where there is scandal, rich peo
Loved this! Now I want to read the original

Mairead Hearne (
The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp ~ 'A hilarious contemporary retelling of the classic society novel, VANITY FAIR, featuring the irrepressible Becky Sharp’

Sarra Manning is an author and journalist and is currently Literary Editor with Red magazine. Her latest novel, The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp, is described as ‘a savagely funny, 21st century remix of Vanity Fair’ and has just been published with Harper Collins.

Having never read the original Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray, I w
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-releases, 2018

This story follows Becky Sharp - a runner up on Big Brother, nanny, Instagram influencer to eventually become a philanthropist. But Becky worked hard for all of this - or did she? Relying only on herself, that is until she senses a chance and someone with more money... or another someone, with even more money? Using other people or simply being ambitious? I haven't read the original "Vanity Fair" so I am probably in the minority that won't be comparing those two books, and also I didn't recognis
Sep 06, 2018 rated it liked it
I wang on a lot about how Vanity Fair is my favourite novel of all time and Becky Sharp is perfection (I hate being asked about favourite novels, but it’s as close to a truthful answer as I can provide). So Sarra Manning’s update of the book was destined to be read as soon as the proof was available on NetGalley. As far as rendering Thackeray’s events and characters contemporary goes, Manning does a flawless job: Becky and Amelia now meet on a reality TV show, Amelia’s father is an investment ba ...more
Ruth Parker
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
As a book this was a weird one. Usually I would say that none of the characters had any redeeming features and the story rewarded those terrible characters for their awful actions and despicable choices.
BUT this was a fairly faithful modern day adaption of Vanity Fair and I was impressed with that. It’s a fairly tough book to adapt for modern audiences and it was done well.
The book gets an extra star for being a strong interpretation of the original text, but as a modern story it isn’t perfect.
Oct 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
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This is such a fun, humorous novel which is extremely relevant to today's social-media, celebrity-obsessed world, but with an extra layer of bite - Becky is no silly airhead. She's mean, conniving and completely harsh in her treatment of other people to get to where to wants to be... and I both hated and sort-of-loved-her for it!

This is one of those novels that are perfect for when you want something that's easy to read but not too light and fluffy. The story j
Trigger warnings: death of a loved one, manipulation, cheating, lying.

I was sold on this the second I saw the title, because I've been trash for Vanity Fair since the BBC miniseries aired in Australia in 1999. I love scheming Becky Sharp, I love to hate George Osborne, I have an unnatural soft spot for wet blanket Amelia Sedley and mooning clumsy William Dobbin. And I don't think Thackeray's satirical assessment of nineteenth century society gets anywhere near the love it deserves.

So the second
Kelly Lacey
Jan 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Review to follow
Fabulous Book Fiend
Sep 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have never read Vanity Fair, or seen the movie/TV adaptations but I went into this novel and loved it anyways. I was hooked into it right from the word go. I loved the concept of Big Brother contestants, or any reality TV contestants for that matter and where are they now. This book also deals with what its like to be a celebrity on social media, what being insta-famous looks like and what that can mean to the person in question as well as those around them. This book also deals with issues of ...more
Lucy Eva
Sep 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
An interesting, modern take on Vanity Fair, surrounded by the latest trends of Instagram Influencers and reality TV game shows, namely Big Brother. You follow the life of the unlikeable but mesmerising Becky Sharp- always cunning, sometimes cruel, but always keeps you on your toes. This book shows the whirlwind of a girl who knows what she wants and almost always gets it no matter who gets hurt in the process. Author Sarra Manning writes beautifully in this well-paced novel with twists and turns ...more
Barbara Elsborg
I haven't read Vanity Fair - or if I did it was so many years ago I've forgotten. Do you need to have read it to enjoy this? Probably not, but I felt as though I was missing a whole element because I hadn't read the original. I didn't like Becky at all and I know we are supposed to like and loathe her but I do need a character to root for and I didn't really get one. She seemed too cruel and uncaring to me and the moments when she wasn't - felt odd. I LOVE Sarra Manning. Unsticky is one of my fa ...more
Steph Hayward-bailey
I found this book interesting at first but by the time I was half way through I was quite bored as the plot is quiet repetitive. I only finished it to see if the ending had a twist which I'm afraid it did not.
Hilary Mortz
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very very entertaining retelling of the classic Vanity Fair for the 21st Century.

Fast, always funny and very readable, I thoroughly enjoyed it and by the end I was more than a little in love with our fascinating perennial anti-heroine, Miss Becky Sharp.
Cressida McLaughlin
Aug 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So sharp and funny and deliciously scathing about so much of modern life. I do wish I was a little bit like Becky, though.
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
'People tell me that you're one to watch,' Laura said starring George right in the eye. 'That you're a man who's going places. So I'd think twice before you start labelling women as evil bitches. I get called that a lot, or words to that effect.'
'But you've never met the woman. if you had then - '
'I've met enough strong, ambitious women who'd be admired and promoted a hell of a lot quicker if they were men. But because they have tits and two X chromosomes, they get called bitches instead,'

Yes ,Y
Feb 14, 2019 rated it liked it
A fantastic modern take on the much loved classic, Vanity Fair.
In Sara Manning’s retelling she tackles the contemporary lifestyles of those who seek fame and fortune via reality shows and Instagram (rather than high society balls and marrying up).
It’s hilariously funny and sarcastically tongue in cheek at times. It’d be perfect for fans of Keris Stainton or Holly Bourne.
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult
Every line in this book is *chef’s kiss* perfect.

Sarra Manning is one of my favourite authors forever and ever.
Linda Hill
Sep 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
The final of Big Brother is coming to an end and life is about to change dramatically for Becky Sharp.

I have a couple of confessions. Firstly, I have never been able to read Vanity Fair as I found Becky Sharp so intensely irritating I never finished it so that I am unable to make any comparisons with Thackery’s narrative and secondly I thought the first chapter to The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp was going to lead to a contrived retelling of someone else’s ideas. I was wrong. I think I got off o
Sep 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
Delightful, well written and very clever. I have often wondered how do you write a "social novel" (which is what Thackeray's original Vanity Fair was) for our modern society - and this is how. It holds the mirror up - to politics, to the class system, to gender inequality, to the ridiculousness of social media's "famous for being famous" celebrities, to the unethical practices of the financial sector and modern media, and the lengths people will go to to claw and manipulate their way to the top. ...more
Karen Whittard
Aug 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a very modern take on the classic tale vanity fair. Which I throughly enjoyed. It is funny and lots of fun and you can’t help but cheer on Becky as the story progresses it is a really easy book to get into and it continues to be that throughout the book. It really is such a fabulous fun read that I enjoyed reading.
Katy Noyes
Sep 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thoroughly contemporary-feeling Vanity Fair, fits character and plot to the modern world seamlessly.

The Audible version breezed by me, I could have listened to it in one go if life (children, school runs, etc) would have let me. Having read Vanity Fair more than a decade ago, the language, characters, etc. weren't vividly clear, but I could recall a lot of the plot and protagonists from Manning's new take on the story.

It's brilliant. A totally recognisable social media and reality TV world sees
Clair Sharpe
The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp is a contemporary retelling of Vanity Fair, which unfortunately I haven't read and am not the slightest bit familiar with which is a real shame as I'd love to be able to compare them!
Becky Sharp is an orphan, "cared" for since her parents death by her father's old drinking buddy, Barbara Pinkerton who is also an agent. The book starts with Becky in the final two at the Big Brother house, alongside privileged bankers daughter, Amelia Sedley. On leaving the house,
Jo Barton
Jan 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Over Christmas I’ve managed to catch up with the TV adaptation of Vanity Fair in which the intrepid Becky Sharp manipulates her way through Georgian society. With the same kind of flair, this fun re-imagining of the original sees Becky Sharp transformed into one of those minor celebrities who make their name by appearing on a popular reality show. Always with an eye on the main chance, Becky is as unscrupulous as ever in her search for wealth and power.

The author has captured the essence of Beck
Sep 29, 2018 rated it liked it
No one, NO ONE writes a lovable bitch as good as Sarra Manning so I was super excited to read this.

Becky brilliantly toes the line between being an awful human being and someone I want to hug. Bonus points for her getting the perfect ending. She uses people and lets them use her without shame and I often wasn't sure if I should be rooting for or against her. A really 10/10 character.

A few minor gripes which is why I haven't rated it as highly as some of Manning's other books. Abrupt change in
Feb 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Some parts of this book were clever satire and a tongue in cheek look at modern society’s obsession with being famous for the sake of it, other parts were a little try hard. Although Becky is unlikeable and downright awful to others you do find yourself cheering her on at times with her various schemes and manipulations. Although Thackeray’s Becky was a truly shocking character there are so many ‘Beckys’ nowadays all wanting their fifteen minutes so the book loses a lot of the impact the origina ...more
Aug 30, 2018 rated it liked it
The story flows easily, it's well written and follows the tale of 2 stars of big brother, whilst I followed the story I unfortunately didn't find it gripped me. Maybe it is because the celebrity lifestyle doesn't really interest me. Which is a shame because the book was very well written and had a great story throughout.

If you like following celebrities on social media and avidly read magazines to catch up with what they're up to then this is the book for you.

Thank you to Netgalley and the publi
Asha - A Cat, A Book, And A Cup Of Tea
Pitch perfect retelling but with none of the heart of Manning's writing.
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Sarra Manning is a teen queen extraordinaire. She spent five years working on the now sadly defunct J17, first as a writer and then as Entertainment Editor. She then joined the launch team of teen fashion bible Ellegirl, which she later went on to edit and has consulted on a wide range of youth titles including Bliss, The Face and More.

Sarra is now editor of What To Wear magazine. She's also been

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