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Call Me Elizabeth Paperback – 7 Apr 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group; Reprint edition (7 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316729760
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316729765
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 575,504 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

Both funny and shocking at times, this is extraordinarily honest stuff. (HOT STARS)

[An] incredible story . . . a touching account of her life to date (SOUTH LONDON PRESS) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

A frank, funny and shocking memoir of one woman's struggle to free her family from debt - by becoming an escort. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Katerina4488 on 14 Sept. 2006
Format: Paperback
I read this book in three days and I really did feel for the plight of 'Elizabeth' and what she was forced to put herself through to help her family survive. I thought it was a good read and it was enlightening as to how these things actually work and how people can fall into such professions quite by chance.

However, for all that enjoyed about the book, I was also frustrated when I learnt that she was doing it mostly to be able to afford to put her children through private school! I know this was due to her bad childhood etc and I can totally understand that she wanted to give them everything, but I can say that, from my own experience of moving schools three times up and down the country from the age of 4 until 12, that this did me less harm then it would have to find out my mother had been a prostitute.

Call me heartless, but why didn't she just send them to a normal state school in the first place, which would have meant no school bills, and then maybe she might have been able to survive with either less time being an escort or without having to do it at all. Just my opinion.

I also thought that it was a shame that she didn't properly acknowledge any of the real issues surrounding people who are abused as children and what they carry into later life. That would have been important, and I think it should have been addressed more seriously as opposed to the Hollywood-style ending!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By tangerina on 18 April 2014
Format: Paperback
I turned to this when I needed something to while away a few hours. It was a lively enough read and did indeed help to pass the time. It seems to be presented as a true-life story, but I can't help feeling that even if the woman who wrote it did work as a prostitute, her portrayal of the other aspects of her life seems over the top! It is very hard to believe that such an apparently intelligent woman could have so recklessly produced six children from three fathers and stuck with the apparently waste-of-space father of the last few so long. Even more astonishing are the claims about her lifestyle: while her husband spent all his time drinking or sleeping, she apparently held down a full-time secretarial job, commuted long distances to London, cared devotedly for these six children, paying for their private schools, feeding them on healthy home-made food, taking them to all their after-school activities, sewing costumes for the school plays, etc, etc... Superwoman has nothing on her! And all this is before she starts working half the night as a prostitute while still holding down the day job, keeping her husband satisfied and having a lover on the side as well! Only well into the book does she decide this is a little too much and give up the day job to concentrate on all-night prostitution - and neither the husband nor the lover suspect a thing until the very end! The final touch: we are assured that she always declared every penny she earned to the taxman (though how she managed to pass these huge sums off as resulting from night time word processing, I can't imagine!). All I can say is, read this with a pinch of salt, and it may give you quite a laugh. But I really can't believe it is an accurate and unexaggerated account...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By palace pier on 10 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
This book left me feeling rather flat. I suppose I have to believe this is a true story but there seem to be so many 'unbelievables' that at times I had my doubts.eg did Paul really never question what she was doing night after night? He is hardly mentioned except to be slated,but she is quite happy to leave 6 children with him while she is working.He couldnt have been that bad. Did she have such high expectations of the men in her life that they felt inadequate?
Some of the story reads like a Mills & Boon novel...6 wonderful children who never seem to want her to stay at home with them,and David who appears like a knight in shining armour on the last page.Wonder what happened to him.

Yes,women have to make sacrifices all the time,especially when money is tight, but usually the first thing to be sacrificed is a high flying lifestyle,something that never seems to occur to this lady.Most women do not take up prostitution.
If anyone is thinking about this line of work there are some handy hints,so for this reason the book is useful. It is not titillating and her experiences are not embellished,but there just seemed an unreal air about the whole thing.
Very easy to read. Make up your own mind
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By bagpuss on 18 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
From beginning to end this is a well written book. Knowing that it is a true story there was always the possibility it would be oozing with self pity and anger, in truth there is not one iota of either. The writer has obviously 'lived a life', however i found myself gaining more respect for her with every page read. For any woman who has had a less than comfortable ride in life there will be aspects of her story that will resonate. By the end of the book i was crying with a mixture of happiness and relief that she had achieved what she had set out to do (bring up her children in a happy and secure environment). What she did to provide this environment will (probably) be a 'marmite' situation for some, as for me...I have nothing but admiration and respect for her.
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