Can You Ever Forgive Me?: Memoirs of a Literary Forger

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Simon and Schuster, Aug 5, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 176 pages
Before turning to the criminal life, running a onewoman forgery scam out of an Upper West Side studio shared with her tortoiseshell cat, and dodging the FBI, Lee Israel enjoyed a celebrated reputation as an author. When her writing career suddenly took a turn for the worse, she conceived of the astonishing literary scheme that fooled even many of the experts. Forging hundreds of letters from such collectible luminaries as Dorothy Parker, NoŽl Coward, and Lillian Hellman -- and recreating their autographs with a flourish -- Israel sold her "memorabilia" to dealers across the country, producing a collection of pitch-perfect imitations virtually indistinguishable from the voices of their real-life counterparts. Exquisitely written, with reproductions of her marvelous forgeries, Can You Ever Forgive Me? is Israel's delightful, hilarious memoir of a brilliant and audacious literary crime caper.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - villemezbrown - www.librarything.com

This sketch of a book amounts to little more than a magazine article about Israel's career as a thief and forger. To fill it out, she includes multiple examples of the fake letters she created ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - akblanchard - www.librarything.com

Down-on-her-luck celebrity biographer Lee Israel came up with a money making scheme that both stretched her creativity and got her in trouble with the FBI. Using both her literary gifts and her ... Read full review

Contents

Brick and Pigeons
11
A Mayan Minute
19
The Flies
29
Cousin Sidney
39
Louise
45
Faux Louise
51
Dorothy
63
Violets for His Furs
89
This Aint No Country Club Lee
105
Prep Time
119
My Third Trimester
125
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Lee Israel was the author of Can You Ever Forgive Me?, Estee Lauder: Beyond the Magic, Kilgallen, and Miss Tallulah Bankhead. She also worked as a copyeditor for Scholastic and American Express Publishing. She died in 2015.

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