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Diamond Doris: The True Story of the World's Most Notorious Jewel Thief

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Soon to be a Major Motion Picture In the ebullient spirit of Ocean’s 8, The Heist, and Thelma & Louise, a sensational and entertaining memoir of the world’s most notorious jewel thief—a woman who defied society’s prejudices and norms to carve her own path, stealing from elite jewelers to live her dreams. Growing up during the Depression in the segregated coal town of Slab Fork, West VirPicture Soon to be a Major Motion Picture In the ebullient spirit of Ocean’s 8, The Heist, and Thelma & Louise, a sensational and entertaining memoir of the world’s most notorious jewel thief—a woman who defied society’s prejudices and norms to carve her own path, stealing from elite jewelers to live her dreams. Growing up during the Depression in the segregated coal town of Slab Fork, West Virginia, Doris Payne was told her dreams were unattainable for poor black girls like her. Surrounded by people who sought to limit her potential, Doris vowed to turn the tables after the owner of a jewelry store threw her out when a white customer arrived. Neither racism nor poverty would hold her back; she would get what she wanted and help her mother escape an abusive relationship. Using her southern charm, quick wit, and fascination with magic as her tools, Payne began shoplifting small pieces of jewelry from local stores. Over the course of six decades, her talents grew with each heist. Becoming an expert world-class jewel thief, she daringly pulled off numerous diamond robberies and her Jewish boyfriend fenced the stolen gems to Hollywood celebrities. Doris’s criminal exploits went unsolved well into the 1970s—partly because the stores did not want to admit that they were duped by a black woman. Eventually realizing Doris was using him, her boyfriend turned her in. She was arrested after stealing a diamond ring in Monte Carlo that was valued at more than half a million dollars. But even prison couldn’t contain this larger-than-life personality who cleverly used nuns as well as various ruses to help her break out. With her arrest in 2013 in San Diego, Doris’s fame skyrocketed when media coverage of her astonishing escapades exploded. Today, at eighty-seven, Doris, as bold and vibrant as ever, lives in Atlanta, and is celebrated for her glamorous legacy. She sums up her adventurous career best: “It beat being a teacher or a maid.” A rip-roaringly fun and exciting story as captivating and audacious as Catch Me if You Can and Can You Ever Forgive Me?—Diamond Doris is the portrait of a captivating anti-hero who refused to be defined by the prejudices and mores of a hypocritical society.  


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Soon to be a Major Motion Picture In the ebullient spirit of Ocean’s 8, The Heist, and Thelma & Louise, a sensational and entertaining memoir of the world’s most notorious jewel thief—a woman who defied society’s prejudices and norms to carve her own path, stealing from elite jewelers to live her dreams. Growing up during the Depression in the segregated coal town of Slab Fork, West VirPicture Soon to be a Major Motion Picture In the ebullient spirit of Ocean’s 8, The Heist, and Thelma & Louise, a sensational and entertaining memoir of the world’s most notorious jewel thief—a woman who defied society’s prejudices and norms to carve her own path, stealing from elite jewelers to live her dreams. Growing up during the Depression in the segregated coal town of Slab Fork, West Virginia, Doris Payne was told her dreams were unattainable for poor black girls like her. Surrounded by people who sought to limit her potential, Doris vowed to turn the tables after the owner of a jewelry store threw her out when a white customer arrived. Neither racism nor poverty would hold her back; she would get what she wanted and help her mother escape an abusive relationship. Using her southern charm, quick wit, and fascination with magic as her tools, Payne began shoplifting small pieces of jewelry from local stores. Over the course of six decades, her talents grew with each heist. Becoming an expert world-class jewel thief, she daringly pulled off numerous diamond robberies and her Jewish boyfriend fenced the stolen gems to Hollywood celebrities. Doris’s criminal exploits went unsolved well into the 1970s—partly because the stores did not want to admit that they were duped by a black woman. Eventually realizing Doris was using him, her boyfriend turned her in. She was arrested after stealing a diamond ring in Monte Carlo that was valued at more than half a million dollars. But even prison couldn’t contain this larger-than-life personality who cleverly used nuns as well as various ruses to help her break out. With her arrest in 2013 in San Diego, Doris’s fame skyrocketed when media coverage of her astonishing escapades exploded. Today, at eighty-seven, Doris, as bold and vibrant as ever, lives in Atlanta, and is celebrated for her glamorous legacy. She sums up her adventurous career best: “It beat being a teacher or a maid.” A rip-roaringly fun and exciting story as captivating and audacious as Catch Me if You Can and Can You Ever Forgive Me?—Diamond Doris is the portrait of a captivating anti-hero who refused to be defined by the prejudices and mores of a hypocritical society.  

30 review for Diamond Doris: The True Story of the World's Most Notorious Jewel Thief

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Stoolfire

    I had never heard of Doris Payne the notorious life-long jewel thief until I just happened to spot this at the library. She's a fascinating woman that's for sure. If you liked Ocean's, you're going to have to pick up this memoir. I have to say that I'm looking forward to the movie of her life featuring Tessa Thompson as Doris.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    I wasn't planning on it, but I finished this book in one sitting. All I knew about Doris Payne going into this story was a blurb I had read online. The whole story I was gripped with what was going to happen next. While it is a memoir, it almost reads like a suspense book. My one wish is that they had polished this Diamond up a bit more. It wasn't well written even with a co-author. I spent many paragraphs needing to reread because I was a bit lost in the context. But overall a fun story of the I wasn't planning on it, but I finished this book in one sitting. All I knew about Doris Payne going into this story was a blurb I had read online. The whole story I was gripped with what was going to happen next. While it is a memoir, it almost reads like a suspense book. My one wish is that they had polished this Diamond up a bit more. It wasn't well written even with a co-author. I spent many paragraphs needing to reread because I was a bit lost in the context. But overall a fun story of the life of a jewel thief.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Fredrick Danysh

    Doris Paker was an international jewel thief. With the assistance of Zelda Lockhart she tells her life's story. The quality of writing varies with the autobiography part reading like it was writtrn by someone with a very limited education while the sidebars regarding the quality of diamonds is much better written. Diamond Doris gives a detailed look into the mind of a person who has chosen a life of crime This was a free proof copy obtained through Goodreads.com.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nandi Crawford

    Great book. Reads like a rollercoaster. How this lady did this and had little jail time is incredible.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Temika

    This will be one of the most entertaining memoirs you ever read! I could not put this down. This book is divided into 4 parts: Color: It’s fascinating how childhood and media can shape how we view ourselves and what decisions we make. Representation matters! Clarity: Doris realized she had the communication skills necessary to make store clerks forget they gave her jewelry to try on. Confusion and familiarity. Cut: The Cartier heist! She breaks down the history and process This will be one of the most entertaining memoirs you ever read! I could not put this down. This book is divided into 4 parts: Color: It’s fascinating how childhood and media can shape how we view ourselves and what decisions we make. Representation matters! Clarity: Doris realized she had the communication skills necessary to make store clerks forget they gave her jewelry to try on. Confusion and familiarity. Cut: The Cartier heist! She breaks down the history and process of how diamonds get to jewelers as she takes you through the story of her 3 day heist in Europe. She had me on edge not knowing if she would get caught. Carat: The weight of it all. Doris is older and life is catching up to her. People close to her are inevitably dying. Technology has advanced and she can no longer fool the police.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I enjoyed reading about Doris' life as a daughter, a mother and a jewel thief. I liked her candid, plucky way of telling her story.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Crystal Zavala

    Diamond Doris is a true crime memoir. I do believe her to be an unreliable narrator, so I took a lot of what she said with a grain of salt. I do not question that Doris had a horrific upbringing and childhood. Her father was controlling and abusive. Doris made a choice at a young age and decided that she would not be dependent on a man to support her. I do not condone how Doris chose to support herself, but I am fascinated with her story. She has a big ego and does not seem to have an Diamond Doris is a true crime memoir. I do believe her to be an unreliable narrator, so I took a lot of what she said with a grain of salt. I do not question that Doris had a horrific upbringing and childhood. Her father was controlling and abusive. Doris made a choice at a young age and decided that she would not be dependent on a man to support her. I do not condone how Doris chose to support herself, but I am fascinated with her story. She has a big ego and does not seem to have any remorse for what she did. For how smart she is, I wonder if she would have been able to put those smarts to better use? I can not pretend to understand what her world and circumstances were like. Doris was born in 1930 at the beginning of The Great Depression and before WWII. I do not believe that Doris would have been able to get away with her thefts if she had been born in another era. She was able to create her persona, travel, steal, and get away before communication of the crime could spread. She was caught numerous times, but was able to talk or pay her way out of it. If she couldn't get out of it, she served minimal time. She was wanted by Interpol, the FBI, and numerous other policing entities. Most of her crimes have surpassed the statute of limitations for charges. It should be noted, according to the Orange County Register, Doris has said "a book deal will help her financially". I listened to the audio version of this book and Robin Miles is an amazing narrator!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Paula Pergament

    Doris Payne is a genius; armed with a keen sense of observation into human behavior, Ms. Payne shares her story of her long and prolific career as a jewel thief. Her methods were simple, her planning tight. Readers gain insight into her motivations, as well as the pressures and fears she conquered in executing her plans and escapes. Brought down in part by modern technology as well as her reputation, Ms. Payne tells her story without shame. Most compelling is her attempt to justify her actions t Doris Payne is a genius; armed with a keen sense of observation into human behavior, Ms. Payne shares her story of her long and prolific career as a jewel thief. Her methods were simple, her planning tight. Readers gain insight into her motivations, as well as the pressures and fears she conquered in executing her plans and escapes. Brought down in part by modern technology as well as her reputation, Ms. Payne tells her story without shame. Most compelling is her attempt to justify her actions to her mother. Armed only with an eighth grade education and coming of age during a time of racial violence, Ms. Payne's determination to live life on her own terms without being tied down is a compelling story. This is one of those real life stories that would be unbelievable if it weren't true.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Beverly

    This was a 3.5 read for me thoughts coming shortly

  10. 4 out of 5

    Victoria Law

    A riveting read by a Black woman who became the world's most wanted diamond thief. I was intrigued by her justification for stealing diamonds (that they had initially been stolen from Africa just as her people had been stolen from Africa), but I did wonder if that was her rationale at the time or if this was something that came to her in hindsight. I also loved reading about her unconventional relationships, first with Babe (the married Jewish man who fenced her diamonds) and then her A riveting read by a Black woman who became the world's most wanted diamond thief. I was intrigued by her justification for stealing diamonds (that they had initially been stolen from Africa just as her people had been stolen from Africa), but I did wonder if that was her rationale at the time or if this was something that came to her in hindsight. I also loved reading about her unconventional relationships, first with Babe (the married Jewish man who fenced her diamonds) and then her 25-year relationship with Kenneth who resigned himself to never being allowed to spend the night at her house, but would send his grown daughter to Europe to help Doris get out of police jams.

  11. 4 out of 5

    BMR, LCSW

    Doris Payne is a baaaaad b!tch. She grew up in West Virginia, the daughter of a wife-beating coal miner. She decided at an early age that no man was gonna control her. She also decided she wanted a life of travel and fine things. She fell into a life of jewelry theft and fencing (though when you're dealing with big ticket items, you "resell" it, it's not fencing). She got caught a few times but served very little time in prisons. Doris never forgot where she came from, and always took Doris Payne is a baaaaad b!tch. She grew up in West Virginia, the daughter of a wife-beating coal miner. She decided at an early age that no man was gonna control her. She also decided she wanted a life of travel and fine things. She fell into a life of jewelry theft and fencing (though when you're dealing with big ticket items, you "resell" it, it's not fencing). She got caught a few times but served very little time in prisons. Doris never forgot where she came from, and always took care of her mama. Recommended for a fast, fun read.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

    For over six decades, Doris Marie Payne was one of the world’s most notorious jewel thieves. Her memoir takes the reader on a journey that starts with her upbringing in the segregated coalmines of West Virginia in the late 1950s to her prison sentence in 2013. This single, African American mother of two explains how she used her charm, wit, and beauty to get away with some of the most prominent jewelry heists in history. She traveled all around the world, stealing valuable pieces from high-end j For over six decades, Doris Marie Payne was one of the world’s most notorious jewel thieves. Her memoir takes the reader on a journey that starts with her upbringing in the segregated coalmines of West Virginia in the late 1950s to her prison sentence in 2013. This single, African American mother of two explains how she used her charm, wit, and beauty to get away with some of the most prominent jewelry heists in history. She traveled all around the world, stealing valuable pieces from high-end jewelers. Doris recalls the horrible memories of racism and watching her mother endure physical and emotional abuse by her father. Those circumstances placed a shield around her heart, which made her vow never to let anyone mistreat her. Doris Payne's memoir is very entertaining; each escapade had me on edge.

  13. 5 out of 5

    booksbythecup

    3.5🌟- "Under no circumstances did I want a 'normal' life--a normal, regular, everyday Black life. No way. Being humiliated at work. Paycheck to paycheck. Church on Sundays. Regular clothes. Routine relationships that don't go nowhere. Absolutely not. Not Miss Doris Payne. I wanted more than that. I wanted nice things. I wanted to travel the world. Normal was not me." Miss Doris Payne commanded the audiences full attention at the Decatur Book Festival (DBF 2019). The place was packed as we e 3.5🌟- "Under no circumstances did I want a 'normal' life--a normal, regular, everyday Black life. No way. Being humiliated at work. Paycheck to paycheck. Church on Sundays. Regular clothes. Routine relationships that don't go nowhere. Absolutely not. Not Miss Doris Payne. I wanted more than that. I wanted nice things. I wanted to travel the world. Normal was not me." 
Miss Doris Payne commanded the audiences full attention at the Decatur Book Festival (DBF 2019). The place was packed as we eagerly await a small nugget of insight into her life and career as a notorious jewel thief. She's a phenomenal woman, graceful and refined, regal and beautiful for 88 years young. The motivation behind Miss Payne's career left me eager to pick up her book to find out more. 
Payne grew up in the segregated Southern US, a coal mining town in West Virginia. She was smart but recognized early in life she wanted independence for herself and vowed to never let a man beat (control) her as she’d seen her father physically beat and abuse her mother. She was determined to get her mother away from the abuse and as she said at the book festival, she didn't care what other people thought. As a young child she figured out a way to snub those who treated her as worthless because of her skin color, a lesson she learned in the store of a Jewish man named Mr Benjamin. When she saw how he changed in front of a white man, but forgetting he’d allowed Doris fo try on some watches, she’d figured out how she’d finance the kind of life she wanted. 
Miss Payne started small, honing her skills and eventually took on the world in her jewelry heists. As she observed everyday life, shopping at the farmers market with her mother, she saw discovered a very important key to her work as a jewelry thief. 
"But I uncovered the keys to getting away with stealing jewels: confusion and familiarity." 
It's noteworthy too that because Payne had made the right connections, people in positions of authority, who would be some of the people who would buy the stolen jewelry from one of her business partner. In this way, Payne would sometimes go through the motion of turning herself in, but because she didn't have the jewels and there was no proof (security cameras' concrete evidence), her exploits grew by leaps and bounds. She stole a lot of jewelry but because she 'played the part' of belonging, being deserving, she could con (confuse) some of the most experience jewelry clerks. 
Payne had a full and long career, she spent little time incarcerated over the course of her work. I enjoyed her story but, there felt like some pieces were missing. I suppose it's not easy to document the many years of her work, but what bothered me most was the uneven tone/writing of the book. The tone felt unauthentic or maybe a better word, is the tone shifted. Perhaps the co-author made some of what Payne would have said many years ago sound too modern, like something a younger person would say today. Some of the idioms and terminology didn't feel like something a woman in her late eighties would say, now or then. Especially since I heard her speak at the book festival too. I expected to hear the authenticity of Miss Payne VOICE as well as her exploits. I have a grandmother a little younger than Payne and I tried to imagine the nuances of her speech, being from the same her generation as Payne's, to capture and experience her voice while reading, but it faded in and out, and didn't feel like what I remembered hearing. 
And there are soooo many instances of the sh** word, I wanted to ask if someone during could have done a word search when proofing and used do a synonyms because the repetitive use of that word was RIDICULOUS and so UNNECESSARY. A few times, sure, but my goodness, I feel sure Payne had a larger vocabulary. I cringed every time it was fired off back to back to back. I asked myself, does Payne and everyone she knows speak this way? I know we can put our best foot forward when we introduce ourselves to someone but based on the book festival interview, it felt off to me. These things took away from the overall tone of the book for me. 
One thing for sure, Payne didn’t “catch a case” that involved her doing any long term jail time. She knew what she wanted, studied her craft and made sure she took care of herself and her family on her terms. I laugh when I think about her saying that, about not catching a case, when someone asked her at the book festival why she didn't stop her career as she got older. Very sad she lost several family members and friends to cancer.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Claudia

    This is the kind of story where you have to go to outside sources to confirm it really happened. Doris Payne was - or rather is since she is still alive - a jewel thief that specialized in diamonds. She not only could talk the talk, but she could walk the walk. Dressed in expensive name-brand clothing in the most fashionable sense, wearing real diamonds that she purchased with money received from previous heists, talked with the friendly and courteous staff while trying on numerous rings and whe This is the kind of story where you have to go to outside sources to confirm it really happened. Doris Payne was - or rather is since she is still alive - a jewel thief that specialized in diamonds. She not only could talk the talk, but she could walk the walk. Dressed in expensive name-brand clothing in the most fashionable sense, wearing real diamonds that she purchased with money received from previous heists, talked with the friendly and courteous staff while trying on numerous rings and when the associate lost track of the number of pieces being displayed, she'd 'forget' that there was still one more piece (or more) still on her finger as she walked out of the store. Literally. And she got away with it for decades. She would make her hit and immediately get on a plane, bus, train and leave the area. Always courteous and polite, she was continually underestimated and she took advantage of it. It is only with the introduction of security cameras - some jewelry dealers hesitated to install them because they could claim higher amounts from the insurance companies for the stolen goods - that she was finally identified. But they still never were able to find the stolen property since she got rid of it immediately. The book goes into her childhood - her father was a coal miner that beat her mother. Her own children. Friends. Associates. Why she never married. Payne does come across as a bit arrogant but she was good at the job she chose. She took advantage of her charm and attractiveness as well as the workers desire for a sale - the bigger, the better for their commissions. Perhaps, it would be better to say that she was larger than life. And what a life she has had. 2019-145

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kevin

    At age 88, Doris Payne (assisted by Zelda Lockhart) looks back at her six decades as an international jewel thief. Diamond Doris is the first time Payne has revealed all aspects of her remarkable life, including the techniques she used to walk out of world-famous jewelry stores with rings worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. She and her five siblings were raised in a poor, segregated coal mining town in West Virginia by her boorish black father and doting Native American mother. Early on, Pay At age 88, Doris Payne (assisted by Zelda Lockhart) looks back at her six decades as an international jewel thief. Diamond Doris is the first time Payne has revealed all aspects of her remarkable life, including the techniques she used to walk out of world-famous jewelry stores with rings worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. She and her five siblings were raised in a poor, segregated coal mining town in West Virginia by her boorish black father and doting Native American mother. Early on, Payne found she had a talent for stealing things. It put food on her family's table and quickly became a lucrative career when she began visiting high-end jewelry stores. By dressing elegantly and wearing an impressive wedding ring set, she became "a woman of class, not a woman on a mission to steal." And her constant chatter kept storekeepers off-balance long enough for her to perform a sleight of hand. In 1974, she was apprehended in Monte Carlo after stealing a 10.5 carat diamond ring worth $550,000 at the time. She was held for nine months but not charged because the authorities couldn't find the ring she'd hidden. Rather than being intimidated by her incarceration, when she escaped, she devised and executed a four-day plan to steal from three top jewelers in London, Paris and Rome. Payne is a feisty anti-hero who refused to be defined by the prejudices and mores of a hypocritical society. Even when she was forced to serve prison time in her 80s. Diamond Doris's captivating capers are audacious and entertaining. Feisty octogenarian international jewel thief Doris Payne reveals her captivating and audacious capers that span six decades.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    While Doris may have led an exciting and adventurous life, the poor writing style of this book made it very hard to enjoy. My assumption is that they author(s) decided to have the style reflect Doris' upbringing, education, and how she spoke. However, combine that with a narrative that jumped around and it made for a messy read. Other things that decreased my enjoyment of what should have been a fascinating read were Doris' need to ethnically identify every single person she interacted with. The While Doris may have led an exciting and adventurous life, the poor writing style of this book made it very hard to enjoy. My assumption is that they author(s) decided to have the style reflect Doris' upbringing, education, and how she spoke. However, combine that with a narrative that jumped around and it made for a messy read. Other things that decreased my enjoyment of what should have been a fascinating read were Doris' need to ethnically identify every single person she interacted with. The nationality of her taxi cab drivers had no impact on the story. Likewise, the translation of the dollar amount of the items she stole, etc, from the value then to now got annoying. A few times would have sufficed. Between that and her continual comments regarding how men wanted to sleep with her well into 70s turned the story into a farce. Somewhere in this lump of coal is a diamond. I just wish someone would have made more of an attempt to find it! Thanks to NetGalley and HarperCollins for a copy of the book. This review is my own opinion.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Evelyn

    I’m not going to quote you exactly but at the end of this novel she writes, you can believe whether this story is true or not that’s up to you! Hilarious!! Listening to this audiobook was fascinating to me. Here is this women using what God gave her and robbing jewelry stores. I don’t think you could do now what she did then. It’s all cameras and technology now. She made no qualms about her lifestyle. I think the part I enjoyed the most was how this book was written. It’s a I’m not going to quote you exactly but at the end of this novel she writes, you can believe whether this story is true or not that’s up to you! Hilarious!! Listening to this audiobook was fascinating to me. Here is this women using what God gave her and robbing jewelry stores. I don’t think you could do now what she did then. It’s all cameras and technology now. She made no qualms about her lifestyle. I think the part I enjoyed the most was how this book was written. It’s as if Miss Doris was sitting in front of you over dinner and drinks telling you her life story. There’s no political correctness or censorship, just a real conversation about her life. People are complaining it’s written poorly or she embellished her story. It’s written in a way that makes you want to read/listen in a day. Sometimes, you just gotta take it for what it is and enjoy it,I sure did.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Weekend Reader_

    I thought going into this story it would a lavish life about this notorious woman but no. Doris "Dink" Payne's story is rooted in pain and survival that ultimately ended in her being alone, preyed on, and using mulsce memory almost compulsively to steal. She is a domestic violence survivor that used stealing to make a better life for her family. Her motive was not to have to depend on a man or be subservient. However, she had only had an 8th grade education but she was determined. Payne's story I thought going into this story it would a lavish life about this notorious woman but no. Doris "Dink" Payne's story is rooted in pain and survival that ultimately ended in her being alone, preyed on, and using mulsce memory almost compulsively to steal. She is a domestic violence survivor that used stealing to make a better life for her family. Her motive was not to have to depend on a man or be subservient. However, she had only had an 8th grade education but she was determined. Payne's story wasn't glamorous Ocean 11 narrative at all this wasn't a rich person being bored. It was sad 😢 I wonder how the film will handle her story.

  19. 5 out of 5

    SuperWendy

    This was a really good listen on audio with the narrator making me laugh out loud several times when the narration went into what I call "child, please - gossiping with your best girlfriend"-mode. Payne's story is definitely stranger than fiction, and illustrates that people see what they want to see - which made Doris very, very good at her "job." Unfortunately, that's kind of how the book comes off at times, like Payne is only showing readers what she wants us to see. Especially towards the cl This was a really good listen on audio with the narrator making me laugh out loud several times when the narration went into what I call "child, please - gossiping with your best girlfriend"-mode. Payne's story is definitely stranger than fiction, and illustrates that people see what they want to see - which made Doris very, very good at her "job." Unfortunately, that's kind of how the book comes off at times, like Payne is only showing readers what she wants us to see. Especially towards the closing chapters that felt a bit glossed over in some ways. Still a wild ride though, and one I enjoyed. Here's hoping a competent producer lands the film rights.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    Growing up poor and listening to her father beat her mother, Doris started preparing for her adulthood as a child. She dreamed and reached her dreams and more. Her world became one of travel, luxury, and, yes, lots of money as she stole diamonds all over the world. "Diamond Doris" is a fascinating read. Her writing skills are superb. She introduces you to her life in total. It's a book you will enjoy time and time again.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Judy

    Growing up poor and listening to her father beat her mother, Doris started preparing for her adulthood as a child. She dreamed and reached her dreams and more. Her world became one of travel, luxury, and, yes, lots of money as she stole diamonds all over the world. "Diamond Doris" is a fascinating read. Her writing skills are superb. She introduces you to her life in total. It's a book you will enjoy time and time again.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Professional Apocalypse

    Doris is badass, no question about that. My only "complaint" is when books like this recollect such EXACT detail about someone's past. I can't remember what I did last Tuesday, let alone the street I was on or what my friend was wearing. So I always have to wonder how factual (or relevant) certain passages might actually be. That's just me though. The book's quick and engaging, and her story's worth knowing.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Christa Van

    Oh my gosh, this book is one heck of a good read. Doris didn't want to "wipe people's butts" for a living so she became a jewel thief. She was good enough to support herself and her family. The adventures she reveals in this book are amazing and her salty language and attitude refreshing. What a life! Robin Miles does a good job narrating this amazing story.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Juliet

    The book was read to me (audiobooks are fantastic!) I listened while cooking, tidying, doing laundry, and falling asleep. While the book was interesting, it wasn’t so captivating as to require me to rewind if I lost focus or fell asleep. Interesting not mot required reading if it doesn’t pique your interesting

  25. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea

    I love Doris I do admire this woman. The life chose to live was not the best . It worked for her. Her life did not seem like it was a struggle but I know in the eras she lives it was. The flash of the clothes and the travel made it seem like the best life ever. But the fear of the police and the politics of the mafia are something else entirely and she was a black woman.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Janet

    I received a free ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. The author’s writing style is simple and I felt a more clear timeline would have been helpful. Doris led an interesting life as a jewel thief. I’m surprised she wasn’t caught on security cameras more often. I would be interested in seeing the movie whenever it comes out.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    I'll give it 5 stars for being so captivating, I didn't want to put it down. Three stars for writing.. it was not well-written, but I guess it was just Doris Payne telling her story so it should be expected. Four stars overall. Definitely an interesting read on something I have followed in the news for years.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Ella

    Interesting woman, though I had a little bit of trouble knowing what to believe because she doesn't seem to give up on her criminal life for any reason beyond getting too old to continue. Her life would make great fiction, and this story kept my interest. I'm always interested in true crime, and from the pen of the person stealing jewels? Couldn't pass it up. But it's not a must-read for me.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Was a fun and interesting read that I was able to read in a couple of days. After thinking about it once I read it, it dawned on me that it was total fiction based on some woman's fantasies as what she claims she did in the era she claims she did it are impossible to believe. So it was interesting to read but felt taken in by the end.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Shannan Harper

    I really enjoyed reading this story. And i felt it ended the smart way. The author also gave us an education on Diamonds at the beginning of each chapter. This was an entertaining read. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All Thoughts and opinions are my own.

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