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Social Creature

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  332 Ratings  ·  192 Reviews
For readers of Gillian Flynn and Donna Tartt, a dark, propulsive and addictive debut thriller, splashed with all the glitz and glitter of New York City.

They go through both bottles of champagne right there on the High Line, with nothing but the stars over them... They drink and Lavinia tells Louise about all the places they will go together, when they finish their stories,
Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: June 5th 2018 by Doubleday
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  • Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton
    Social Creature
    Release date: Jun 05, 2018

    For readers of Gillian Flynn and Donna Tartt, a dark, propulsive and addictive debut thriller, splashed with all the gl

    Format: Print book

    Giveaway ends in: a

    Availability: 100 copies available, 3604 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: May 03 - Jun 02, 2018

    Countries available: US

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    Community Reviews

    (showing 1-30)
    Rating details
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    Emily May
    Mar 20, 2018 rated it did not like it
    This is the second book I've read in the last couple of years that should just be called "The Talented Mr. Rip-Off". Genuine Fraud was the other one. The moment you tell us that a book is like The Talented Mr. Ripley - which the blurb does - you basically spoil everything that happens for anyone who knows the plot of that book.

    But, to be honest, I don't think not knowing the plot of Social Creature could have saved it. I just don't get the hype. This was an unpleasant reading experience from sta
    Melisa - Traveling Sister
    Jan 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: thriller, netgalley, arc
    What in the everloving world did I just read and I mean this in the best possible way. Holy smokes, man, that was a firecracker of a book.

    This is like nothing I’ve ever, ever read before, but I’m having a similar reaction as to when I read Caroline KepnesYOU. It’s a little something like this: I don’t know if I liked it but I can appreciate it for being something completely unique and compelling, yet dark and disturbing. In fact, I would give it a full 5 stars for sheer originality, creativit
    Diane S ☔
    Apr 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Remember the party girls, Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Ritchie? Their nightly exploits posted everywhere. The beginning of the book reminded me of them, Lavinia, extroverted, larger than life, heavy drinker, partying nighlty. Louise, quieter, introverted, attracted to Lavinia with her outrageous personality and lifestyle. Constantly taking selfies, posting everything on social media, one outrageous scenario after another.

    Under the glitter and glitz, this is actually a dark novel. These character
    May 20, 2018 rated it it was ok

    Louise is poor. Lavinia is not. Lavinia takes Louise under her wing. Lavinia is young, lacking in common sense, with a very aggrandized sense of herself. Louise sees an opportunity and takes it. How much would you put up with to live the rich lifestyle? And what would you do to maintain it?

    First warning - The characters here are all unlikable. Lavinia, especially, was just so obnoxious, so pretentious, so needy it was hard to see why she was so popular. The supposedly so desirable lifestyle com
    Jan 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Although I haven’t read enough of the upcoming summer books to be sure, this may well be the beach read of the season. The plot is one that we all know well: young, socialite takes poor small-town girl under her wing and obsession ensues. It reads fast and reminded me of Bight Lights Big City with more than a dash of The Luckiest Girl Alive thrown in for good measure. Burton captures NYC wonderfully including the vast disparities between working class Sunset Park, Brooklyn to the glitzy world of ...more
    Bentley ★
    May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc, cover-porn
    See this review and more like it on!

    Mesmerizing, twisted and intense, Social Creature examines the destructive power of narcissism in the digital age - and the lengths one will go to obtain the glamorous lifestyle portrayed in their social media accounts.

    Evocative of the glitz and glamour of The Great Gatsby, New York City high society life has never seemed so nihilistic as it does in this novel. Told through the perspective of 29 year old Louise - an outsider looking
    Kelly (and the Book Boar)
    Find all of my reviews at:

    This is one of those times where the blurb name dropping might be a curse. If readers go into this expecting something warped like Gillian Flynn, there will be a lot of disappointed faces on the intertubes (except for one scene that had Mitchell like awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww yeah!!!!). I also get the idea of the comparison to Donna Tartt because Tara Isabella Burton has a distinct writing style, but once again it’s not very accurate. Why a
    Apr 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    I don't know what this will say about me but I freaking loved this book. Oh, man, it is so deliciously fucked up.

    This story follows Louise, an almost 30 yr old New Yorker, and her budding friendship with the 23 yr old Lavinia. Lavinia comes from money and Louise doesn't come from anything. Louise becomes obsessed with Lavinia and in keeping her friendship with her alive. Lavinia is everything she isn't. She's a free spirit who lives off her parents money while taking a break from school. There
    ☆Dani☆ ☆Touch My Spine Book Reviews☆
    I really enjoyed this novel and thought the storyline was unique. I qucikly became invested in the story and this book surely grabs your attention! The only thing that bugged me is the characters got on my nerves at times but hey it happens. Overall I think it was a good read and not your everyday thrill either. I recommend this novel!😀
    Liz Barnsley
    Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    I read Social Creature using the literary equivalent of watching a horror movie with a cushion over your face, peering out over the top of it. I was compelled ever onwards but almost didn't want to look...

    It starts off quietly enough - Louise has nothing and she meets Lavinia who has everything. Louise wants what Lavinia has and Lavinia is more than happy to give it to her. At first. Of course surface sparkle hides inner darkness and you can never really know the truth of someone else's existenc
    "There are two kinds of people in the world: the people you can fool into liking you, and the ones clever enough not to fall for it."

    Social Creature is the most peculiarly told original story that I've ever read! I mean this in the most loving way because I obviously loved it (finished the story within 24 hours #allIdoIsRead). Louise Wilson is an aspiring writer living in Brooklyn, while maintaining odd jobs and coordinating tutoring sessions so she can pay rent while she writes. She ends up c
    Apr 16, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley, suspense
    This book kind of exhausted me, TBH.

    I couldn't stand any of the characters, which I don't typically mind, but for some reason these all grated on my nerves, not to mention they all had obnoxious names.

    Lavinia: High maintenance, spoiled little rich girl who lives life to the fullest, often at others expense. (And I'm not just referring to money)

    Louise: This one confused the heck out of me....often appearing as a dull, mousy, wallflower; and others she is shown as beautiful, vibrant and witty. But
    Elizabeth Sagan
    May 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
    **I was sent this book in return for an honest review. This did not affect my review.**
    Woow, this was siiick! Sick and toxic and sad and scary and RELATABLE and I loved it! If this book doesn’t ring your alarm bells, I don’t know what will. Maybe only Black Mirror.
    I loved the style. It was weird at the beginning but you get used to it. The characters? You will hate them. Almost all of them are terrible human beings. But you will also love them. Because you know at some point you did some of th
    Mar 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: netgalley
    Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton is one of those books that, when it ended, I didn’t know what to think. I’m still not sure. The book is extremely readable, I couldn’t stop reading. The story centers on the relationship of Lavinia and Louise, two twenty-somethings living in New York City. Lavinia is a beautiful young woman who lives off her parent’s money while on a “break” from grad school. Lavinia spends all of her time partying with other troubled and moneyed friends, she meets Louise, ...more
    Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Thank you to Doubleday Books #partner for sending me Social Creature. I buddy read this one with my fave! I started this yesterday and was finished by this morning. Social Creature was strange and weird but in a good way. Different, I’d say.

    Louise Wilson is living in NYC working three jobs in hopes to becoming a writer. One of her jobs is tutoring students for SATs. Lavinia Williams contacts Louise to help her younger sister get ready. Well, a night of tutoring leads to actual babysitting. Lavi
    May 26, 2018 rated it liked it
    You know how there are those books that give you all the chills and make you really uneasy, where you don't like a single thing that is happening with the plot and the characters bother you to bits, where the storyline is so disturbing that you almost pull out your hair, and yet it is nearly impossible to put the book down and you keep turning pages! Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton belongs in that category.

    Louise is an ordinary girl trying to make ends meet, struggling with multiple job
    Social Creature is like The Secret History's beach-read cousin. It follows the story of Louise, a down on her luck aspiring writer in New York City who meets the rich and glamorous Lavinia, and the two form a sort of dysfunctional, obsessive friendship which is barreling toward tragedy, as we're told from the onset that Lavinia is going to end up dead.

    I don't think I've ever described a book as 'intoxicating' before (and in fact I tend to roll my eyes at that descriptor), but that's the word I k
    Carlene Inspired
    I won a copy from a GR giveaway! Yay!
    Cover is GORGEOUS in person.

    Social Creature is like reading a version of Gossip Girl in the Upside Down. It's fancy and over-the-top, but there's a dark cloud just waiting to pour on the party goers. I'd read the reviews and even had fellow readers tell me this book would take me on a wild journey, but nothing prepared me for Lavinia and Louise. Tara Isabella Burton tells the story of glittering parties, wealth, romance, and obsession with a literary flare, t
    Melissa In The City &#x1f942;
    I give Social Creature 25 glamorous glitzy Stars. The bright kind of ones that light up a NYC rooftop at 1am and make everyone look glamorous. The kind of stars that make your champagne sparkle in your skyline selfie.
    That’s how many ⭐s I award this book.
    But under the bright lights of the parties and underneath the shiny silver sequin gowns, this story is DARK. It’s as dark and sad as the bars are at 5am when the parties finally end and nothing is left but empty wine bottles, trampled confetti a
    Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    Imagine if Patricia Highsmith had written A Talented Mr. Ripley in today’s digital age. And what if Mr. Ripley were a woman with porous boundary issues and sociopathic tendencies. instead of a man?

    If you can make this creative leap, you will have some inkling about what’s in store with you with this highly addictive and propulsive page-turner.

    Two twenty-something women meet in glitzy New York: the easily-overlooked Louise, who is blonde, thin, pretty and also forgettable. And the larger-than-lif
    Hannah Orenstein
    Jan 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    Oh my god, I devoured this in 48 hours. Social Creature's world is dark, sexy, bohemian, vintage-obsessed, ultra-literary... reading this novel is like visiting the Upper East Side's weirdest cocktail party. I LOVED trying to predict Louise's next move.
    May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Laura has broken away from small town life for a new start in New York City, but it is not quite working out as planned. She has three jobs, which leave her exhausted, a small, sublet apartment in an insalubrious area, and constant money worries. She planned on being a writer, but now she is often slumped on trains, shuttling between her shifts as a barista, or tutoring jobs. When she is home, she spends her time hurrying past scary men on street corners; her key ready in her hand, heart hammeri ...more
    Jessica Woodbury
    May 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc
    3.5 stars. The subgenre where Normal People end up in the inner circles of Rich People is one I rarely read anymore because it's rarely enjoyable. But I did enjoy this one, which brings a sharp eye and a bit of a thriller style to make it the kind of book you can race through in a day. It still suffers from many of the thing this genre suffers from (the rich person in this scenario is always attractive, gorgeous, careless, and yet not interesting enough for the reader to fully understand their m ...more
    Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    I loved Social Creature. I also loved The Talented Mr. Ripley, and I can see how the comparisons work. But this is not Gone Girl - it's actually better. At first I found it strange, how quickly I fell into Louise and Lavinia's lives - especially since you don't learn much about Louise beyond a basic outline, really. She exists through her interactions with Lavinia, which makes sense, considering where the book ends up. Sure, you hear about her jobs, her family and escape to the big city. The mot ...more
    Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Social Creature is an outrageous, biting novel that takes elements of Bret Easton Ellis and The Secret History and other detailed literary thriller-type books and gives them a modern twist. Louise lives in New York City in a shabby apartment in a sketchy location, working multiple jobs and barely even claiming to be a writer any more. In a twist of fate, she meets Lavinia: rich, fun, breathtaking, with a beautiful home and a social life to die for. Somehow, Lavinia pulls Louise into her world, s ...more
    Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    HOLY CRAP. This book.

    It's been quite awhile since I've read a book that gave me this feeling...a feeling of "I want to know what happens next/I DON'T want to know what happens next" that just has you reading it, compelled to continue without stopping, until it's over. I quite hate the phrase that's thrown around so much these days, but "unputdownable" is definitely what comes to mind with this novel about Louise Wilson, a girl getting through her days in New York come what may. To say any more
    ♥ Sandi ❣
    3.5 stars Thank you to Penguin's First to Read and Doubleday for allowing me to read this ARC. Publishes June 5, 2018.

    I cannot compare this story to Gone Girl. I dislike the use of that type comparison. This is not really an original plot, it has been done before, but if you can restrain your disbelief, Burton will carry you all the way to the end.

    This story is a story of nonsense, but it is a story that wraps you in it's arms and swallows you up. There is the constant push to find out how it
    We cannot be known and loved at the same time.

    Louise is twenty-nine and struggling in New York, and they say if you haven't made it in New York by thirty, you never will. She has three jobs, a shitty apartment and no friends to speak of. Until, through one of her SAT tutor ads, she comes into contact with Lavinia – a charismatic bohemian whirlwind. Lavinia is six years younger, rich and beautiful. Lavinia goes to fabulous parties. Lavinia has friends with connections. Lavinia is writing a nove
    Bonnie Brody
    Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
    This gloriously painful book was a truly new literary experience for me. Not only was the meta-fictional technique unusual, but the author's insertion of self, warnings about future events and deaths to come, explanations of recycled personalities, and the overwhelming presence of social media as an ubiquitous lifeline, had me love/hating the book from the beginning. How I wanted to hate this book where the horrific is the norm, where the best party has the most gross happenings, and where the p ...more
    Lolly K Dandeneau
    Jan 26, 2018 rated it liked it
    via my blog:
    'Louise doesn’t know whether she’s terrified or terrible or triumphant, whether she is in love or just surviving. All she knows is that the world has ended but that it is also so turning.'

    As her mind is turning, whirling… said to be a Talented Mr. Ripley for the digital age, it started off slow for me until… until… the downward spiral began. Manipulation, lies, stealing (not just money either) this is a disturbed mind. Greedy for a better life,
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    Tara Isabella Burton has followed a female hermit into the remote Caucasus, gotten love amulets from Turkish Islamic shamans, and held signs with the street preachers of Las Vegas.

    Her work on religion, culture, and place can be found at National Geographic, The Wall Street Journal, Al Jazeera, The Economist's 1843, Aeon, The BBC, The Atlantic, The American Interest, Salon, The New Statesman, The T
    More about Tara Isabella Burton

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