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Private Equity

'A vivid account of a world of excess, power, admiration and status'

Carrie Sun



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27 February 2024
A gripping memoir of one woman’s self-discovery inside a top Wall Street firm, and an urgent indictment of privilege, extreme wealth, and work culture

When we meet Carrie Sun, she can’t shake the feeling that she’s wasting her life. The daughter of Chinese immigrants, Carrie excelled in school, graduated early from MIT, and climbed the corporate ladder, all in pursuit of the American dream. But at twenty-nine, she’s left her analyst job, dropped out of an MBA program, and is trapped in an unhappy engagement. So when she gets the rare opportunity to work at one of the most prestigious hedge funds in the world, she knows she can’t say no. Fourteen interviews later, she’s in.

Carrie is the sole assistant to the firm’s billionaire founder. She manages his work life, becoming the right hand to an investor who can move mountains and markets with a single phone call. Eager to impress, she dives headfirst into the firm’s culture, which values return on time above all else. A luxury-laden world opens up for her, and Carrie learns that money can solve nearly everything.

Playing the game at the highest levels, amid the ultimate winners in our winner-take-all economy, Carrie soon finds her identity swallowed whole by work. With her physical and mental health deteriorating, she begins to rethink what it actually means to waste one’s life. A searing examination of our relationship to work, Carrie’s story illuminates the struggle for balance in a world of extremes: efficiency and excess, status and aspiration, power and fortune. Private Equity is a universal tale of self-invention from a dazzling new voice, daring to ask what we’re willing to sacrifice to get to the top—and what it might take to break free and leave it all behind.

Imprint:   Bloomsbury
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm, 
ISBN:   9781526634726
ISBN 10:   1526634724
Pages:   352
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Carrie Sun was born in China and raised in Michigan. She holds an MFA in creative writing from The New School. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband. Private Equity is her first book.

Reviews for Private Equity: 'A vivid account of a world of excess, power, admiration and status'

Private Equity is an extraordinarily gripping and revelatory journey through a world we rarely get to glimpse, despite its influence on our lives. But it is also a moving story of how easily a life can be submerged by work, and what it takes to regain one’s soul -- Oliver Burkeman, bestselling author of FOUR THOUSAND WEEKS: TIME MANAGEMENT FOR MORTALS Piercing and propulsive. Carrie Sun's examinations of this most rarefied stratum are nuanced and poignant. Private Equity is a young woman's reckoning, set at the summit of money and power that asks the most universal of questions: how much of ourselves do we owe our family and work and how do we find the courage to make our days our own? -- Stephanie Danler, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author of SWEETBITTER Carrie Sun's nuanced and shocking memoir depicts a woman's rise in a high finance dystopia where an employee's life is never private and nothing is equitable. Private Equity is the account of years of leashed efficiency that left her a wild and breaking heart and, eventually, the courage to speak its bitter, unsparing truth -- Honor Moore, author of OUR REVOLUTION, A MOTHER AND DAUGHTER AT MIDCENTURY A fascinating memoir, tense and exciting, taking us inside a rarefied kingdom that, more than we'd like to admit, controls our lives. I highly recommend it -- Phillip Lopate

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