... throughout this book she remains very much Barbara the undermothered Jewish girl from Hendon, a wartime kitten who, with no little melodrama and self-pity, has survived by purring and biting and writing ... This book is in part a love letter to Black, in part a bracingly intimate chronicle of financial free fall ... Calamity, in the form of protracted lawsuits and ruin, made her more likeable ... There is something magnetic and magnificent about this sustained, occasionally deranged lament.
... extraordinary ... What a divinely bonkers book this is — a crazed page-turner as written from the inside by Marie Antoinette. Nearly a decade after her husband was sent to prison — he was sentenced to 78 months — Amiel, who is 80 this year, writes the whole thing as if she’s still not sure what she did wrong...You just think: how deluded can you get? ... Like her husband, [Amiel] writes in dense, pompous sentences. Often it feels like thrashing your way through a thick, oversexed jungle ... This is nothing in comparison with the half-cock slavering pulp descriptions of how tall and handsome the uniformly dreadful men in her life were.
... scorching ... Amiel decries culture wars and identity politics, skewers herself, and ferociously attacks enemies, including with accusations of anti-Semitism ... This arch, over-the-top lambasting will captivate political junkies and society watchers alike.
... observant and unforgiving ... This half is packed with enough memorable characters, household moves, dinner parties, and jewelry shopping excursions to fill at least three typical memoirs. The second half, a tough slog, is devoted almost entirely to Black's legal problems ... Even Amiel's most enthusiastic admirers will grow weary of the massive amount of attention devoted to this relentless onslaught ... A celebrity memoir with an uncompromising kick that could stand to shed at least 200 pages.