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My Friend Anna: The True Story of a Fake Heiress Book Cover My Friend Anna: The True Story of a Fake Heiress
Rachel DeLoache Williams
Simon Schuster Audio
23rd July 2019
Audiobook
288 (Kindle edition)
Scribd

How does it feel to be betrayed by your closest friend? A close friend who turns out to be the most prolific grifter in New York City...

This is the true story of Anna Delvey, the fake heiress whose dizzying deceit and elaborate con-artistry deceived the Soho hipster scene before her ruse was finally and dramatically exposed.

After meeting through mutual friends, the 'Russian heiress' Anna Delvey and Rachel DeLoache Williams soon became inseparable. Theirs was an intoxicating world of endless excess: high dining, personal trainer sessions, a luxury holiday ... and Anna footed almost every bill.

But after Anna's debit card was declined in a Moroccan medina whilst on holiday in a five-star luxury resort, Rachel began to suspect that her increasingly mysterious friend was not all she seemed.

This is the incredible story of how Anna Sorokin conned the high-rollers of the NYC social scene and convinced her close friend of an entirely concocted fantasy, the product of falsified bank documents, bad cheques and carefully edited online photos.

Written by Rachel DeLoache Williams, the Vanity Fair photography editor who believed Anna's lies before helping the police to track her down (fittingly, deciphering Anna's location using Instagram), this is Catch Me If You Can with Instagram filters. Between Anna, Fyre Festival's Billy McFarland (Anna even tried to scam Billy) and Elizabeth Holmes, whose start-up app duped the high and mighty of Silicon Valley, this is the year of the scammer.

*Anna stood a high-profile trial in New York that has been followed voraciously by the media. She was found guilty of theft of services and grand larceny, facing up to 15 years in prison. The trial ended on 25th April.*

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That is me at the end of listening to this audiobook.

I will try my best to keep this review as concise and straight to the point as I can so I don’t rant about it as it is a memoir of an actual human being who lives on this planet.

This book is very easy to get through, listening to stories of parties and lunches at 5-star restaurants, it’s all very juicy and entertaining but I had a huge problem with the writing of the book or more specifically how the author chooses to talk about herself in these books.

I am not expecting her to dry out all her flaws for everybody to see, no, I mean this book just talks about one aspect of her life which was her memoir in how she got scammed by Anna Delvey.

What I meant was can she at least be less self-centered or less narcissistic in portraying herself? I say she is narcissistic because she would write herself in comparison to Anna as being a humble person, a patient person, a woman who was kind and thoughtful. The first few chapters of this, fine I can handle it but after 7 hours of listening to this shit, it hit a nerve. Like, Jesus Christ woman okay I get it. You are Mother-freakin-Theresa for being able to stand Anna and her privileged ways.

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In my honest opinion, this book needed a few more rounds of editing. Perhaps add in how Rachel managed to overcome this difficult moment in her life. What did she do? How did she do it? Did she downsize her life? Did she take loans? What? All I heard in this audiobook was how she bemoaned her fate and can’t accept the help of others because she just CANNNNNOTTT be a burden to other people.

Also, I am wondering how did she not lose her job? This pertains to 16K that was put on her company’s credit card on her trip to Morocco when Rachel had to physically bring her personal credit card to pay for the tour to Yves Saint Laurent Moroccan home, the Marjorelle Gardens. How did she explain that to her bosses? It was never explained, answered or whatever.

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Another thing that irked me was the book reeked of privilege. First of all, who in their right mind agrees to give their personal credit card to a hotel to hold without even inquiring as to how much the cost would be. I understand she was told that her card would not be charged but at least don’t be stupid about it and ask just how much was the total cost so you can weigh your options but no she gave them her credit card because she didn’t want her Moroccan holiday to be ruined. Like what?

Yes, Anna said she would pay Rachel back and that the whole trip was on her but if there’s no itinerary or proof of payment for anything like girl, it’s akin to me saying that I will go sunbathe on the moon tomorrow. Just because I say it doesn’t make it true does it?

In the end, I do not recommend this book. You will lose your remaining brain cells in an attempt to digest just how gullible and self-centered the author way but I will recommend another book which is Bad Blood by John Carreyrou. At least, with his book, you actually learn something.

By the by, I gave this book a 2.5 but because Goodreads and my own book review plugin doesn’t half 0.5 ratings in their system hence I gave it a 3.