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Call Me Elizabeth

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  460 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
Dawn Annandale is bright, witty, and well educated. But when her marriage began to fall apart, she had to face a seemingly insurmountable pile of debts on her own. Determined that her children would not suffer because of their parents' mistakes, and with no family to turn to for help, she searched desperately for a way to make some money, and fast. And made the decision to ...more
Paperback, 290 pages
Published April 7th 2005 by Little, Brown Book Group
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Gary
Jul 11, 2016 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can well understand why Dawn Annandale chose to become an escort -It was out of love of her children and the determination to give them the best life possible.
I do not however believe she would have done this though if her sense of self-worth had been so badly damaged by the severe sexual abuse she suffered at the hands of her father as a child and teen.
It clearly made her feel her own body was worthless and that it mattered not if she enjoyed sex, sex was merely a stepping stone of survival.
...more
Jennifer
Mar 30, 2012 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was given this book to read by a prostitute, a madam for whom I worked as a receptionist. It was an engaging story, and easy to read, but it just doesn't feel right, it feels like a fairy tale. The real world of prostitution isn't this easy. I find this book a little dangerous, it gives the impression that all punters are good looking, sexy, live in nice houses, pay well and pay up without trouble. The reality of prostitution is just not like that. Like the film "Pretty Woman", this book does ...more
Adrian Lee
Feb 09, 2013 Adrian Lee rated it really liked it
Phew, a heavy read indeed. A story about a mother who would do her best (for me, probably the best that I have ever seen) to make sure her children would be take care of. A story about how a woman got through her journey through broken marriages, shattered family and a quest of finding true love.

Prostitution
Being a hooker is a despicable job? After all it's just a job who satisfies the needs of lonely men and the sex is made upon two consensual adults? Do people aware that there are many mothers
...more
Julie
Sep 18, 2014 Julie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cecily
Aug 22, 2011 Cecily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary
I am giving this four stars because I liked it enough to finish it in one sitting. For the "true" story part - I will be shelving it under contemporary fiction...
Anna
Loved the book, could not put it down.
Sherry Cogburn
Feb 18, 2009 Sherry Cogburn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oohhh! She's bad....... It is amazing how we humans justify our bad behavior.
Sarah Goode
Aug 26, 2010 Sarah Goode rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Read it and hated it. I really didn't like her attitude. Essentials are not private education and £50 a pair kids shoes. I definitely couldn't empathise with her.
beautywithbooks
Indeed an intense read. A mother who would do her best to give her children the best childhood even though with her own shattered family and broken marriages in search of true love. Many would think was it necessary to become a escort. There are many jobs out there. They why become an escort? Given the circumstances, six children to feed, with no help from your partner and a past of being abused as a kid by her own father, what option did she had? Obviously she preferred to give her children the ...more
Laura
Sep 25, 2013 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: three-star
I find it hard to review these type of books without succumbing to clichéd observations. However, this memoir in particular has been written with many clichéd descriptions, so it is hard to write it any other way!

Dawn is a hard working married woman with half a dozen children, all privately educated, and has a beautiful home. After running into a devastating financial situation, Dawn decides to turn to the oldest profession in the book, without her husbands knowledge. Her journey keeping up thi
...more
Chrystyna
Jan 30, 2012 Chrystyna rated it liked it
Another chapter of The Almost Moon, another quick read of something less harrowing before I read the next one.

This is the true story of a mother that is 'driven' to prostitution by overwhelming debts and no viable alternative to save her family home and lifestyle. In that respect it should be sympathetic, but.... the family lifestyle wasn't exactly the breadline. A large family, 6 kids, but they're at private school with all the extra-curicula activities that go with it. Surely you'd put your ki
...more
Michaela
I think this book is excellent
Jessica
Feb 10, 2014 Jessica rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
WIfe, Mother, Escort, and such a Mary-Sue. So not a true story by the way it was written.

1 star for decent sentence structure that you just didn't get in 50 Shades, but otherwise what seems to be an equally unrealistic story.

I would of liked to hear more about Paul the husband who only seemed to sit in front of the tv and drink beer, when he wasn't at work. Some small insight into his mind would have fleshed out the family situation more. Some mention of her siblings once they were grown up wou
...more
Ineke van Mackelenbergh
Aug 09, 2015 Ineke van Mackelenbergh rated it did not like it
I agree with some of the other reviews that this was an easy-read with good sentence structure if an overly clichéd story, but my reaction to it was that I found it all a bit fantastical. If in any way autobiographical, I am certainly not the one to judge the choice of job in order to get a family out of ‘dire straits’ if that is what it takes (she is certainly not the only mother/ housewife/ wife to have done so). But it read a lot more as fiction than fact.
I cannot believe that the children wo
...more
Karen Douglas
A fascinating, but extremely frustrating read!

I found it so hard to empathise with the author who turned to prostitution to prevent her 6 (!!) children from going without the bare essentials. Those being private education, a grand house, the best clothes (nothing second hand or Primarni here) and every mod con a child could wish for!!!!!

It's funny how other people's perception of what is essential can differ so much!

I would love to know what happened to Anna's siblings - where were they whilst
...more
Jennifer
This was a really quick read about a woman who becomes an escort to support her six children the best way she knows how. After getting way too far in over her head in debt, "Elizabeth" is determined to guarantee her children a great lifestyle and to maintain stability in her home. Although some may disagree with her decision to take up the world's oldest profession, she pulls through and does what she needs to do to support her family and keep her home. "Elizabeth" almost hits rock bottom before ...more
Jenny-Lee
Ok so the writing is poor - that is the smallest issue I had with this book. And ok so a mother finds herself in dire circumstances and has to resort to prostitution to make ends meat for her family- or in Annandale's world, the six children's private education may be compromised and there may not have been veal on the table every tuesday (I marginally exaggerate on the second point). This wasn't my biggest issue either. HOWEVER (and its a big however)my big issue was that I don't buy a word of ...more
Lynsey
'Children going without the bare essentials' it says on the back of the book; one of the reasons that this woman turned to prostitution. I don't think that steadfastly refusing to take your 6 children out of private education quite counts.
Still, I admire her determination & work ethic, and obviously the details of some of her clients were quite titillating!!
Although this was an easy read - I got through it in less than a day - the writing style was quite wooden & staid.
How did she mana
...more
Jayne Catherine pinkett
Nov 09, 2016 Jayne Catherine pinkett rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: diversity
Very worthwhile read.This is a true account of authors life struggles and how as a mother she felt she had no choice but to become an escort! To feed and clothe her children.
Avery thought provoking and honest story about having to make such choices and the reality and at times dangerous 'other life' she lived. Controversial to some due to the nature of the work however as a mother how far would any of us go to protect our family? Well written enjoyable read. I admire her for what she felt she ha
...more
JLW Lopez
The story is somehow interesting because Elizabeth sees things differently as most people see it. In my view, she is a lost soul since her childhood. The moral values we all learned from home was not instilled in her properly. The love for her kids she kept telling us in the book was part of her defense mechanism. Her kids will surely be her saviour.
It is an okey book to take to the beach. It has some insights on the dangers and unpleasantness of being a call girl.
Amy
Mar 03, 2016 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was an interesting read, however as a true story it left a lot of questions in my mind. Save for a few scary incidents, she makes the world of prostitution seem so lovely. The pimp and her clients are so nice and caring. Is that how it really is? She also over justifies her reasons for becoming a prostitute. The things she deemed "essential" i.e. the private schools for her children really aren't.
Kirsty
Feb 20, 2008 Kirsty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If read with an open mind, this is a very interesting read. Dawn was a high class prostitute (if you could call a prostitute high class). She takes us into the world she worked in, and explains the rules and dangerous situations that this world entails. She also tells how it made her feel and why she did it. I read this on recommendation from a friend, and really enjoyed it, however it hasn't changed my views on prostitution.
Kirstie
Mar 07, 2012 Kirstie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My mother in law loaned me this book - it is very racy!!

I found it very hard to feel sorry for the woman in the book - although she felt sorry enough for herself in an unhappy marriage with a useless husband. He is that useless that she becomes an escort - how she did this whilst telling her hubby she was in an office job, lord only knows!

A ver interesting read though - I just couldnt 'like' the author (it is a true story)
Cass Rigby
Mar 22, 2012 Cass Rigby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW!!!! started this book at 730pm last night and just completed it today 237pm. At times I really struggled to believe that she lived this double life. I barely have enough time for 2 kids and a part time job let alone 6 kids and 2 jobs. If this is all completely true then I take my hat off to her, what an amazing dedicated mother. It has actually made me re-evaluate how much time I am giving to my kids and I am going to fit a few more hugs into their day also.
Katie Grainger
Jul 22, 2011 Katie Grainger rated it it was ok
This was a really quick read but interesting, I have to say at some points I thought that the lengths Elizabeth went to without cutting costs was unbelievable. In the end however she did what she had to and kept her children safe and happy, with no one else to help her. I admire the lengths she went to. Interesting book, I enjoyed looking into this window of her life. An informative and interesting read.
Katrin
Nov 14, 2007 Katrin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women
very interesting book. it's supposed to be a true story. She sort of guides you into the world of prostitutes, of course it's the high end, the expensive kind. Nevertheless. it's still a dangerous profession. There are rules and ways to minimize danger. She tells us why she needs to prostitute. You need to keep an open mind when you read this book. Then you can enjoy it.
Esther
Jun 27, 2012 Esther rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book...not fabulously written but clear and good insight into her life. She did what she had to do to support 6 kids with little support from her husband. Good on her I say...don't judge until you've got some understanding, the pain she suffered is apparent throughout as is her strength and determination.....
Bren
Feb 09, 2015 Bren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015
Brilliant true account of the struggle of a woman to care for her family and the lengths she went to in order to do so. I read the book in a single day; I just couldn't leave it alone.
Highly recommended, but be aware that it is slightly saucy in places.
Linda
Nov 29, 2010 Linda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Can't believe what this woman did to keep her home life the same.
Mahendra Madavaram
Really disappointed a lot, but some what impressing
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