The rise and fall of Anna Sorokin (better known as Anna Delvey), the fake Russian-born German heiress who worked her way into New York society and managed to defraud hotels , banks and wealthy friends, is documented in Netflix’s new true-crime series Inventing Anna.
But the Netflix drama isn’t the first time Delvey’s story has been told.
Rachel DeLoache Williams, who is played by Katie Lowes on the show, documented her encounters with Delvey in a 2018 essay for Vanity Fair, where she was working as a photo editor at the time.
Later, she conveyed her experiences further in a book, titled My friend Annapublished in 2019.
Here’s everything you need to know about the book behind Netflix’s hit Inventing Anna…
Rachel DeLoache Williams’ book My Friend Anna
My friend Anna brought Sorokin’s crime story to light after it was published in 2019, following a Vanity Fair article also written by Williams.
Featuring detailed reporting by Williams and real text messages between her and Sorokin, the book chronicles the couple’s tumultuous friendship from the premiere’s perspective and explores how Sorokin was convinced to pay $62,000, which promised repay – which Williams said she failed to do. To do.
As seen in Inventing Anna, Sorokin initially treated Williams to everything from fancy dinners and expensive sauna sessions to regular workouts with a celebrity personal trainer.
But things took a disastrous turn when Sorokin invited Williams to join her on an ill-fated “all-expenses-paid” trip to the five-star La Mamounia hotel in Morocco. When Sorokin’s credit cards mysteriously stopped working, the trip took a dark turn as the scammer began asking Rachel to cover the costs which, before she knew it, amounted to over of $62,000.
My friend Anna has received accolades and become one of Time magazine’s 100 must-reads of 2019 – it’s available to pick up on Amazon now.
In April 2019, a jury found Sorokin guilty on eight counts: grand larceny, attempted larceny, and theft of services. However, she was found not guilty on the second-degree larceny charge, related to the alleged theft of $62,000 from Williams.
How does Inventing Anna follow Rachel Williams’ book?
As detailed above, Inventing Anna depicts much of Williams’ story but, unlike her book, the series is not told entirely from her point of view.
Instead, the series tells the story through Vivian Kent (Anna Chlumsky), the fictional replacement for Jessica Pressler, another journalist who wrote the New York Magazine expose on which the series is based.
Additionally, Inventing Anna’s portrayal of Williams isn’t exactly likable, with the character described in the outline by Netflix as “a born follower whose mindless worship of Anna nearly destroys her job, her credit, and her life.
“But if her relationship with Anna is her biggest regret, the woman she becomes thanks to Anna is perhaps Anna’s greatest creation.”
Williams has since revealed that she had no influence on Netflix’s portrayal of her – and that she felt the characterization was inaccurate.
“This description from Netflix was shocking. [It] stripped me of my agency, my accomplishments and my truth,” Williams recently wrote in an essay for Time.
“Were we supposed to believe that the woman I had become was not because of the parents who raised me, the love I shared with my family and friends, my own efforts or my growth personal, but because of Anna?
Read more: Is Inventing Anna based on a true story?