10 Books To Read If You’re Obsessed With “The Dropout”

I’m Susan, and I am *obsessed* with stories of scammers. If, like me, you’ve been bingeing shows like Inventing Anna, The Dropout, and WeCrashed, I’ve made a list of books that you might enjoy.



Penguin

Susan Rigetti is an author, screenwriter, and the former technology op-ed editor at the New York Times. She has been named a “Person of the Year” by Time, the Financial Times, and the Webby Awards, and has appeared on Fortune’s “40 Under 40” list, Vanity Fair’s New Establishment List, Marie Claire’s New Guard list, the Bloomberg 50, the Upstart 50, the Recode 100, and more. She is the author of a book on computer programming that has been implemented by companies across Silicon Valley, and the critically acclaimed memoir, Whistleblower.

1. Cover Story: A Novel by Susan Rigetti


Harper Collins / Brooke Greenberg

I’m kicking off this list with my own contribution to the scammer fiction canon. Cover Story: A Novel follows Elle intern Lora Ricci, who gets caught up in the very tangled, very complicated web of a charismatic con artist whose name is (not really) Cat Wolff. The whole story is told in emails, FBI notes, journal entries, text messages, and magazine articles. I had so much fun writing this, and I think you’ll have fun reading it, too.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here.

2. My Friend Anna by Rachel DeLoache Williams


Gallery Books / Brooke Greenberg

This memoir by Rachel DeLoache Williams, who wrote the famous Vanity Fair article about her friendship-gone-wrong with Anna “Delvey” Sorokin, is a fascinating read and a front-row seat to what it was like to be in Anna’s orbit.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

3. Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou



Knopf / Brooke Greenberg

If you’ve watched The Dropout, you’ll recognize the name “John Carreyrou” — the intrepid, fearless Wall Street Journal reporter who exposed Theranos. His book Bad Blood is one of the best nonfiction books I’ve ever read — I read it in one sitting, and I still can’t stop thinking about it four years later. It’s almost unbelievable that Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes almost got away with it all — and they might have, had it not been for one very brave reporter.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

4. Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art by Aly Sujo and Laney Salisbury



Penguin / Brooke Greenberg

Con artist John Drewe and art forger John Myatt ran one of the most mind-blowing art fraud schemes in history, and this jaw-dropping investigation follows their long-running con.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

5. Catch Me if You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake by Frank Abagnale



Broadway Books / Brooke Greenberg

You’ve probably seen the amazing movie of the same name by Steven Spielberg (if you haven’t, go watch it right now), but Frank Abagnale’s memoir is a must-read. When reading it, I couldn’t help but suspect that he was seriously exaggerating the tales of his exploits, and honestly, that’s one of the things that makes this book so fun.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

6. The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith



Vintage / Brooke Greenberg

This book is a classic for a reason. Highsmith brings you into Tom Ripley’s head, following his every unhinged decision, and even though you don’t want to be there, you can’t look away.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

7. The Art of Forgery: The Minds, Motives, and Methods of the Master Forgers by Noah Charney



Phaidon Press / Brooke Greenberg

I find art forgery especially fascinating, and Noah Charney’s book is the best overview and introduction I’ve found. The stories in here are so wild, and the art and illustrations are absolutely glorious.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

8. Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen



William Morrow & Company / Brooke Greenberg

This entertaining novel about two former roommates who run a counterfeit luxury handbag scam has it all! It’s coming out this summer — June 7.

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

9. The Plaza: The Secret Life of America’s Most Famous Hotel by Julie Satow



Twelve / Brooke Greenberg

This list wouldn’t be complete without a book about one of New York’s most iconic hotels, and this book is unputdownable. Satow brilliantly chronicles the history and the glamour and all of the juicy drama (and, believe me, there is a lot of it).

Get it from Bookshop or from your local indie bookstore via Indiebound here

10. JR by William Gaddis



NYRB Classics / Brooke Greenberg

This book isn’t for the faint of heart. Told almost entirely in unattributed-and-nearly-impossible-to-follow dialogue, JR takes us along on the adventures of a kid named, well, “JR,” who builds a business empire. It’s one of the funniest books I’ve ever read and probably the best novel I’ve ever read about capitalism. A masterpiece, in every way. (PS: The secret to reading this and enjoying it is to just read it without thinking about it too much or agonizing by trying to figure out
who is saying what — the chaos is kind of the point!)

Get it from Bookshop.