The Man in the Rockefeller Suit: The Astonishing Rise and Spectacular Fall of a Serial Imposter
A real-life Talented Mr. Ripley, the unbelievable thirty-year run of a shape-shifting con man.
The story of Clark Rockefeller is a stranger-than-fiction twist on the classic American success story of the self-made man-because Clark Rockefeller was totally made up. The career con man who convincingly passed himself off as Rockefeller was born in a small village in Germany....more
This book left me wondering how so many intelligent and aware people fell for ‘Rockefeller’s’ shenanigans. He grew up in a small German town where he already showed signs of manipulativeness, brutality and mental illness. Hitchhiking in Germany Christian K. Gerhartsreiter (Rockefeller’s given name) meets an older vacationing American couple who he forms a friendship with only to turn up on their doorstep in the States a year or so later. They’re bemused but take him i...more
CG may be a liar, but he is a great one. Starting as a 17 year old in America, he manages to create a life for himself by a string of endless lies. Later in life in New York City he convinces...more
Nominated for an Edgar this year, this is a fascinating study of one of the world’s most successful scam artists. I have to qualify “must successful,” since he is now in jail for the abduction of his daughter after divorcing his wife – and a ‘person of interest’ in what might turn out to be a murder case. The man who is the subject of this study is Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter, born in Bergen, Germany, in the Bavarian Alps in 1962. He ca...more
He lives with many host families but wears out his welcome in Boston. So, he changes his identity and enrolls in another college in Wisconsin. There, he secures a green card through a quickie marriage and divorce, which doesn't trigger anything with immigration. Qu...more
The story of Clark Rockefeller, or whichever alias you decide to call him by, is fascinating. This man was such a skilled manipulator and quite a cunning liar. He was able to fool highly educated people into believing his enormous expanse of lies. He was even able to fool his wife over the course of their ent...more
CKG is a real jerk. I detes...more
Journalist Mark Seal has written a account of th...more
But young Christian went far beyond just changing his name to something more easily pronounced by his would-be peers. One identity at a time, one gullible group of wealthy acquaintances at a time, he morphed into Clark Rockefeller, "cousin of a cousin" to the famous family, a man firmly ensco...more
Seal, a Vanity Fair reporter, does a diligent job of unraveling the mystery of his con. Gerhartsreiter began his journey in Connecticut as a pretend foreign exchange student (he was really overstaying his brief tourist visa), then moved on to college in Wisconsin, where he proceeded to marry the sister of a wo...more
THE MAN IN THE ROCK...more
The life(s) led by this character as he climbs his way up the social stratum of American blue blood society is at once audacious and eerily admirable.
The devastation and true mayhem that is left in his wake is appalling.
And the fact that so many people who "should have known better" were snookered in by what they wanted to believe; instead of what logic dictated was reall...more
Who is the Man in the Rockefeller Suit?
Although I do not read many non-fiction books, the blurb grabbed my attention. I did not catch the news scandal in 2008 about the man who posed as Clark Rockefeller, but was actually a German immigrant named Christopher Gerhartsreiter, so the story was completely new to me. The author, Mark Seal, unravels the mystery of Christopher Gerhartsreiter’s journey from nothing to living a life of luxury, yet it is not a linear path. Th...more
A young German immigrant fabricated, manipulated, and invented his own truth through 30 years of deception, only to prove the aphorism in the end. This is the account of Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter; a.k.a., Chris Mountbatten Chichester; a.k.a., Christopher Crowe; a.k.a., Chip Smith; a.k.a., Clark Rockefeller: charlatan extraordinare . Where America is known to be the place where one can reinvent oneself, Gerhartsreiter took that to an entirely new level, f...more