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Everything Is Going to Be Great: An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour

3.3  ·  Rating details ·  938 Ratings  ·  197 Reviews

When she lands a coveted nonpaying, nonspeaking role in a play going on a European tour, Rachel Shukert—with a brand-new degree in acting from NYU and no money—finally scores her big break. And, after a fluke at customs in Vienna, she gets her golden ticket: an unstamped passport, giving her free rein to “find herself” on a grand tour of Europe. Traveling from Vienna to Z

Kindle Edition, 309 pages
Published (first published 2010)
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Aug 16, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If Eat, Pray, Love were written by David Sedaris:

A. It would have been interesting.
B. It would have been 108% less annoying and 127% less preachy.
C. It would be Everything Is Going To Great: An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour

Can you be under thirty and publish the second volume of your memoirs? You can if you're the super funny Rachel Shukert. In her first book Have You Know Shame and Other Regrettable Stories, Shukert took us as far as the start of her life at NYU. In her new bo
I won this book off of Goodreads' First-reads and I had such high expectations when I got this book. I thought "Hmmm......a girl fresh out of college goes overseas on a theater tour only to find herself....interesting!" Boy was I wrong.

This book was a little bit of a struggle to get through. I know right away when I like a book, I'll want to keep going. Here, I had to struggle to not put down the book after the first chapter. The way that Shukert uses humor to diffuse the story that she's tellin
Nov 23, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you've ever dreamed of traveling to Europe with no money or any real idea of how you are going to live, this is the book for you. If you have a young daughter who wants to do that, do not read this book, it will scare the hell out of you.

Subtitled An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour, Shukert recounts her many adventures traveling around Europe, first as the member of an acting troupe with a sketchy agenda, and then on her own, courtesy of an unstamped passport which allowed her
Aug 18, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ibooks
As a 99-cent book on itunes goes, it was OK. I was hopeful at the beginning, which had some laugh-out-loud moments, but the irreverent writing style soon wore thin when there was little actual substance. I didn't find Rachel to be likeable or relatable - I guess because I was capable of making better decisions in my early teens than she was in her twenties. After awhile, it just got tiring.

I wasn't offended by the language or humor, which I'm assuming is why a lot of people gave it low reviews.
Less a travel memoir and more a sex/sexual encounter memoir. I'm not a prude and I love this genre, but this book was just a little too self-indulgent for my taste. The tone is humorous and the pacing is good, but overall the book didn't do it for me. The people who love this appear (via other reviews) to love exactly what I did not.
Aug 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For the love of god, please keep reading this book review because you NEED to know WHY you must try to win (or BUY, or, at least READ) a copy of Everything Is Going To Be Great by Rachel Shukert.

I had the pleasure of meeting Rachel Shukert at a book blogger event hosted by Harper Perennial (I just love them!) during the 2010 BookExpo America and the Book Blogger Convention week last May at the Algonquin Hotel. (I know, pretty friggin fancy, aren’t I?) I was hurting desperately due to major shoe
Hilarious. Here's a peek. "Amsterdam can be an impossible place to navigate...The only foolproof way to get anywhere is ask a native for directions, which they are usually happy to provide. But this too poses a difficulty, because the names of Dutch streets are, to a native English speaker, completely impenetrable...a street name can easily have more than twenty letters, which, I'm sure you'll agree, is completely f*cking ridiculous...Therefore, the best solution is simply to pronounce the unpro ...more
Jun 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is Eat Pray Love for the cynical fun-haver. No spiritual mumbo jumbo here, thank god. Just loads of cocktails, misadventures with horny foreigners, and a whole lot of laughs. Finished it in one day and not because it was a light read—because I couldn't put it down. Oh, and even more evidence that Christopher Hitchens is full of shit because this broad is high-larious!
It was only until the final third that I was really even interested Shukert's story.
Aug 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rachel Shukert has a unique gift. It's not her talent for writing which is remarkably smart and witty, nor her skill in theater. It's her exceptional perception of herself and her ability to keenly expose both the admirable and the despicable aspects of herself. That she does so without the use of apologies and without a shred of youthful conceit gives her memoir, Everything Is Going to Be Great another leg up.

Both happenstance and serendipity find Rachel living in Europe. An unstamped passport
Caitlin Constantine
Lately the publishing world has seen fit to gift us with a subgenre of memoir written by youngish American lady performers as they detail their sexual escapades and the ridiculous partners with whom they engaged in said sexcapades. I have read at least half a dozen of them (although I have yet to indulge in their converse, the ones about religious ladies who struggle to keep both faith and hymen intact as they brave the Big City) and for the most part I find them disappointing. For me the nadir ...more
Since I'm studying abroad in London this summer, I have been obsessed with reading books about people traveling to Europe. When I saw this memoir on goodreads, it sounded like something I would love to read, so I picked it up. Sadly to say, I wasn't all that of a fan of Rachel's story and how her "European Grand Tour" turned out.

First off, Rachel's Grand Tour of Europe only really happens in Amsterdam. She spends a couple of pages in France and some in another country, but the rest takes place
Kim Forsythe
Jul 30, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: not the easily offended
Full disclosure: I received this book as a First Reads winner.

I was a little skeptical at first. I requested the book because, like most things, I liked the cover more than the other books on the list. I had never heard of Rachel Shukert before requesting the book, but after I received it I started seeing her name everywhere. People were raving about her and her second memoir. It is always such a pleasant surprise to find out that after being completely shallow in your reading choices you are re
patrycja polczyk
First of all, I'm glad I didn't pay for this book - I've read through my Scribd subscription. When I've started reading this book, I thought it's not good at all. Later it got bit better, not amazing, though. Subtitle of this book is quite misleading, as most of this "grand tour" consisted of staying in Amsterdam, Zurich and Vienna, with a short break in Paris. I chose this book because of the title, wanting to read about travels. Well, unfortunately it's not really travel book. Instead, we get ...more
You know that “friend” you have who’s a complete fuck-up and tells the funniest stories about the debacle that is her life? She isn’t a real friend, someone you’d trust with your spare keys, for instance, or to console you when tragedy strikes, but she’s oh so much fun to be around. Now imagine that friend went to Europe for a year and has just called to dish the dirt. That’s Rachel Shukert’s memoir in a nutshell. You’ll laugh when she reveals that the Dutch don’t believe in lactose-intolerance ...more
Oct 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't believe it took me so long to discover Rachel Shukert! She is one of the funniest and freshest new voices I've come across in a very long time. I thought "How Dare You" was fantastic, but her newest book, part memoir, part travelogue/part lambaste of everything from Santa Claus to Phil Collins was hysterical. I laughed at least once per page. I'm not talking about a chuckle to yourself kind of laugh either; I'm talking milk-out-your-nose-get-thrown-out-of-public-places belly laughter.
Sep 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This wasn't as bad as I thought, and I am glad I didn't give up after the first 50 pages since it got better as I went along.

Other reviews have mentioned that this book is basically Rachel's tour through the men of Europe, and that is somewhat true. I didn't think it was as bad as other reviews made it sound (the threesome scene was actually a bit funny since the image is of one of the guys cavorting around in his zebra-print g-string), but I did think the title was a bit wrong. It wasn't a "Eur
Rachel Carr
Nov 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To read more reviews check out Reading Rendezvous on MISS at

As we embark on this journey with Rachel Shukert we are immediately intertwined into her whirlwind adventures. In Everything Is Going to Be Great by Rachel Shukert we are thrust into a world of snide and sarcastic comments, and I love it! Rachel a recent NYU graduate with a wonderful and extremely useful degree in Acting. Jewish girls everywhere listen up! Remember those calls from your mother po
Oct 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, humor
1 book I read―Everything Is Going To Be Great: An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour by Rachel Shukert

2 words that describe the book―Sex Memoir (NOT so much a travel memoir as you might think)

3 setting where the book took place or characters I met

* Setting: Primarily Vienna and Amsterdam, Modern Day

* Rachel Shukert is a Jewish girl from Omaha who moves to New York City to make it as an actress. She is broke and barely getting by when she finally gets her “big break”—working for a te
Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner)
Reviewed on my blog: The Perpetual Page-Turner

Rating: Between 2.5 stars and 3.
How I got this book: Sent to me by the awesome people at Harper Perennial
Why I read this: I'm obsessed with travelogues and was so excited because it about a girl who was a recent college grad and I figured I'd be able to live vicariously through her as a recent college grad myself!

This book and I had a love/hate relationship. I started this book and found myself loving it and then I hit a chunk where I wanted to flin
Jennifer Rayment
Sep 14, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Good Stuff

* Book is written by a wonderfully funny self-deprecating and honest women
* So funny at times you will snort wine out your nose -- true story (Hmm, maybe should put that under not so good stuff)
* The How to Use this Book at the beginning is worth the price of the book alone
* Love her relationships and conversations between Rachel and her parents and between her and her two gay roommates
* Refreshingly honest, definitely the kinda person you want to hang around with
* Oh come o
Aug 17, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I normally say "My take on...," when I post a review, but I have to make an exception with Everything is Going to Be Great by Rachel Shukert. I'm just giving my thoughts on this one because I couldn't finish it. I usually give books 50-60 pages before deciding it's not for me. I gave it 168 to be exact, before deciding I had to stop. Here is why:

Everything is Going to Be Great is about Shukert's journey in Europe after landing a role in a play. After graduating with a fancy degree from NYU, Shuk
Aug 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2010
Nothing is more embarrassing than reading this book while on a bus with 33 of your coworkers and laughing so hard you snort, only to be asked what you were laughing so hard about and explaining as quietly as possible that you were laughing at a description of the author performing fellatio on an older Austrian gentleman when, to her surprise, she is face to face with an uncircumcised penis.

Actually, come to think of it, even more embarrassing is explaining all of this to your mother — I had the
Aug 26, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Everything Is Going To Be Great, Shukert manages to get herself into some odd situations. She eats penis-shaped hot dogs in the company of skinheads in Vienna, she buys a bike from a junkie in Amsterdam, and while inquiring about a dentist she ends up in bed with two friendly men (but against her will).

This and more you can find in this funny memoir. There’s funny writing and funny situations. I personally liked reading about the things that happen to Shukert a lot, but I found her attempts t
Julie - Book Hooked Blog
I have to start this review by letting you all know that I am a complete and total prude. Luke likes to tell me that if I were a super hero, my name would be Super Prude. I would have ice cold lazer beams of disapproval that I shoot from my eyes. It's shocking but true, I am prim and proper. I make responsible life decisions and like to plan in advance.

Given my complete and total prudery, you might not think I'd enjoy this book, which is all about the author's experience with alcohol, men, and l
Patrick Brown
Jul 13, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Patrick by: Erica Barmash
Some time ago, somebody caused a ruckus on the internet by asserting that, generally speaking, women aren't funny. That this actually caused a controversy of sorts is ridiculous to me. Of course women are funny. Anybody who disagrees hasn't read Julie Klam, Julie Klausner, Sarah Vowell...And they clearly haven't read Rachel Shukert.

This book, following the young Shukert on various European excursions and adventures, is as funny and knowing as any book I've read this. After college, Shukert gets
Aug 24, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My library got a whole slew of new books in the travel section - one of my favorite sections - and because I'm a frequent book borrower, I immediately noticed all the new bindings staring back at me from the shelf. I picked this one because I enjoy reading travel narratives, and since I'm on a big Europe kick lately, I thought it would be fun to read.

This book is hardly what I expected, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. I thought by "grand tour", it was going to be something of a trip throug
James Lang
The author of this nonfiction travel memoir finds that her passport did not get stamped upon her arrival in Vienna with a theater compnay, and uses that excuse to overstay a trip to Europe. The book promises a description of a European Grand Tour, but if this trip was sold to me as a grand tour I would want my money back. She spends a few weeks in Vienna and then several months in Amsterdam and . . . that's pretty much it. So you don't really get the kind of exposure to Europe that the title see ...more
Ernestasia Siahaan
Apart from introducing me with all sorts of creeps you may get entangled with if you're :
a) too desperate to have anyone to like/want you, and
b) too naive that you actually feel flattered by strangers groping you,
the book didn't really offer me anything I couldn't already find in typical cynical/self-deprecating comedy.

The title is at the same time misleading and true. The book is not about anything normal people would think of when they read the words "European Grand Tour". The author only went
I received Everything Is Going to Be Great: An Underfunded and Overexposed European Grand Tour from the publisher as a Goodreads First Read giveaway prize in August, and started it immediately. And then I got sidetracked. And sidetracked again. And again. And...well, you get the point. This wasn't because I didn't like the book, because I enjoyed every minute I spent reading it. I'm not actually sure why it took me so long to finish, but at any rate, I am finished (finally), and here's my review ...more
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Giveaway and Q&A May 23, 2011 1 2 May 17, 2011 03:14PM  
Goodreads Live with Rachel Shukert - 12/14 2pm ET 17 11 Dec 14, 2010 12:13PM  
Win a copy of Everything Is Going to Be Great by Rachel Shukert 1 4 Aug 23, 2010 01:28PM  
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Rachel Shukert is the author the the critically acclaimed memoirs Everything Is Going To Be Great and Have You No Shame? Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including Salon, McSweeney's, Slate, Gawker, the Daily Beast, Heeb, and Nerve, and been featured on National Public RAdio. She has also contributed to a variety of anthologies, including Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists and ...more
More about Rachel Shukert...

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“Now, through an act as simple as walking across a stage and collecting an empty plastic folder representing a degree, our stock had plummeted to nothing, the wretched leavings of some cosmic Ponzi scheme. A lifetime's worth of planning and training and delusion gone with the wind. Some of us were moving home to live free of charge in our parents' guest rooms, or if we were thin enough, heading west to try our luck in L.A.; others, to our collective horror, were being forced to work at actual jobs.” 1 likes
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