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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Fiction is Make Believe--Memoir Shouldn't Be!

And yet, authors, and their publishers, continue to try to get away with selling their fiction as memoir. You would have thought that there would have been a little more vigilance after James Frey's A Million Little Pieces fiasco. This past week in the news comes the revelation that two more hoaxes have been perpetrated on the general public: Love and Consequences by Margaret B. Jones and Surviving with Wolves by Misha DeFonseca.

Literary fraud is nothing new of course. Here's an entry from the Columbia Encyclopedia [R 031 COL].

The New York Times covers more recent fraud in A Family Tree of Literary Fakers.

Let me suggest a few recent memoirs that, so far, have not proven suspect!

  • Blech, Susan. Confessions of a Carb Queen: The Lies You Tell Others and the Lies You Tell Yourself. [B BLE]
  • Bryson, Bill. The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir. [B BRY]
  • Franks, Lucinda. My Father's Secret War: A Memoir. [B FRA]
  • Hall, Meredith. Without a Map: A Memoir. [B HAL]
  • Land, Brad. Goat: A Memoir. [B LAN]
  • Moody, Rick. The Black Veil: A Memoir with Digressions. [B MOO]
  • Tammet, Daniel. Born on a Blue Day: Inside the Extraordinary Mind of an Autistic Savant. [B TAM]
  • Wisner, Franz. Honeymoon with My Brother: A Memoir. [B WIS]


  • Maybe I shouldn't have included the Hall book listed above--I know someone who grew up in the same town as Hall did, and it seems that her recollections, and Hall's recollections, are vastly different! Hummmmm...

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