She’s real, all right, and I’m sitting on the bed next to her. Her name is Dr Brooke Magnanti. Her specialist areas are developmental neurotoxicology and cancer epidemiology. She has a PhD in informatics, epidemiology and forensic science and is now working at the Bristol Initiative for Research of Child Health.
Magnanti is a medical research scientist. The reason why she became a prostitute are pretty straightforward. She was in London, having given in her PhD thesis and preparing for her viva, when she was running out of money. She didn’t want to go into debt, so she started turning tricks. I am really surprised. I didn’t expect her to be an academic. This paraphrase of her explanation sounds a bit simple ―and it is― so it’s best to read the original article at the Times, where the reporter actually met her.
She was a London call girl for 14 months, from 2003 to 2004. She worked for an agency, and continued being a call girl after she found a job as a computer programmer for 3 or 4 months.