Gilded Lily: Lily Safra: The Making of One of the World's Wealthiest Widows

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9780061133947: Gilded Lily: Lily Safra: The Making of One of the World's Wealthiest Widows

“Isabel Vincent has written a riveting account of the life of the international socialite and billionairess Lily Safra, allegedly the third richest woman in the world.... It’s a very good read.” — Dominick Dunne

In this absorbing biography of Brazilian-born philanthropist and socialite Lily Safra—the first ever published—acclaimed investigative journalist Isabel Vincent (Bodies and Souls) delves beneath the intrigue surrounding one of the world’s richest women. From her humble beginnings in a Rio de Janeiro shantytown to the tragic death of her fourth husband, legendary billionaire banker Edmond Safra, in an arsonist’s fire in their Monte Carlo penthouse, Gilded Lily combines all the elements of compelling fiction in an absolutely enthralling account.

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From the Back Cover:

The mesmerizing biography of one of the world's richest, most intriguing women—philanthropist and socialite Lily Safra

In the early morning of December 3, 1999, Lily Safra stood shivering in her nightgown on the grounds outside her sumptuous Monte Carlo penthouse where, just hours before, her fourth husband, reclusive billionaire Edmond Safra, died in a fire. An American nurse employed by the Safra family was eventually convicted of the arson death. Overnight, Lily became one of the wealthiest widows in the world.

The Brazilian-born Lily Safra was no stranger to tragedy. In 1969, her second husband, the Brazilian multimillionaire Alfredo Monteverde, died from two gunshots to the chest. The Brazilian authorities ruled it a suicide. In 1989, her beloved eldest son and four-year-old grandson died in a car accident. But just who is Lily Safra? Despite having become a fixture in society columns for her generous charity work and lavish parties, the elegant and enigmatic widow has remained in the background.

Gilded Lily tells Lily Safra's story for the first time. Using archival sources, court documents, and interviews with childhood friends and former employees in South America, investigative journalist Isabel Vincent chronicle's Safra's rise from humble origins in Brazil to fabled wealth in London, New York, and Monaco.

About the Author:

Isabel Vincent is an award-winning investigative journalist currently working for the New York Post. She is the author of Bodies and Souls: The Tragic Plight of Three Jewish Women Forced into Prostitution in the Americas; Hitler's Silent Partners: Swiss Banks, Nazi Gold, and the Pursuit of Justice; and See No Evil: The Strange Case of Christine Lamont and David Spencer. Her work has appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times "T" Magazine, the Independent, Marie Claire, L'Officiel (Paris), and many other international publications. She lives in New York City.

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