Louise Jarvis Flynn, "Everybody’s Fine"

Two sisters and baby brother gather at the fortified super-house of their sister Nell.

(from Zoetrope All-Story, Winter ’08-’09)

Who likes to read about rich people? It feels like an outdated thing, stories of mundane little moments in the life of privileged wasps. “Everybody’s Fine” could have used a bit of humor, a hint that somehow at some level these people knew they were ridiculous. It’s not that it’s not well-written — it was — I just didn’t care a whole lot about what happens to Percy, Nell, Sue, Dalton, et. al. I guess I’m the snob.

One thought on “Louise Jarvis Flynn, "Everybody’s Fine"

  1. Jonny V.

    I have to disagree with you. I loved the story. I think the perspective of the narrator is fascinating, and that, though she grew up privileged, she is somewhat outside this “group of rich people.” I think the story is a critique of all that garbage. I mean all that business about the holiday cards with peoples’ kids — it’s brilliant! I get those cards every year and I think the same thing: my god, so much forced happiness. What is everybody trying to sell? I think that the narrator (and the author) are well aware of this, and it makes the story very profound.


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