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Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Can You Ever Forgive Me?: Memoirs of a Literary Forger | Lee Israel
20 posts | 22 read | 20 to read
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, Nol 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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PlayingBonny
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One finished, next up!

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PlayingBonny
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Next up, this shortie for the ‘under 150 pages‘ prompt of the Magical Reading Challenge. Originally I wanted to go for Alchemist (did all my owls), but I‘m not going to get enough reading time so Auror it is. #magicalreadingchallenge #newts2019 #auror

emilyhaldi I really enjoyed this one and Israel‘s sense of humor 3w
PlayingBonny @emilyhaldi I‘m liking it so far. She has a way with words. 3w
3 likes2 comments
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feminismandyoga
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Pickpick

This is one of my Read Harder 2019 books. It's about a non-violent true crime that I thought would be perfect for a reading challenge to begin with. Its is interesting for both the crime and the writing. Israel has a great style that is entertaining and not too serious. She knows where she went wrong and isn't afraid to poke a little fun at herself while admitting how things went down. It's a short little memoir too, at just under 3 hours. ⠀

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Shadowfat
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Mehso-so

I agree with some of the other reviews on this. The author shows very little remorse for what she did. I would do anything for my cat but I would also try to find any legit job instead of putting all that time in for forgery. Especially since she still seemed strapped for cash. I found her hard to tolerate . Maybe the movie is better?

Leftcoastzen I haven‘t read the book , but I thought the movie was great. (edited) 2mo
Shadowfat I'm glad to hear that @Leftcoastzen , I think I'll give it a try! 2mo
Leftcoastzen Also should say I almost never say that a movie is better than the book😂Don‘t want to lose my Litsy cred! 2mo
24 likes3 comments
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DogEaredBooks
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Ever since reading Catch Me If You Can I have lived con men stories so when this list was recommended by Book Riot I added almost all the books. Any others they left off?

Access at: https://www.bustle.com/p/15-true-crime-books-about-con-artists-for-anyone-rivete...

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Bibliogeekery
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Pickpick

A rare case of the movie being better than the book for me! I still enjoyed this weird little foray into Lee Israel and her celebrity forgery business. It's so interesting to see how proud she was of her letter-writing, attributing her skill at it to her background as a biographer and how very little remorse she expresses for her crimes. A quick, interesting read! #queerbooks

TheBookHippie Is it worth the read?? I enjoyed the film so! 5mo
Bibliogeekery @TheBookHippie I loved the movie too and this was a nice little supplement to it! 5mo
65 likes2 comments
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Riveted_Reader_Melissa
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Another one I watched earlier this week, again not up for best picture, but for best actress. Melissa McCarthy definitely played a great part and against her normal type. I was sucked into this story and found myself rooting for the criminals, even though I knew it couldn‘t end well. Another interesting film, based on a nonfiction book (that I really should read) and about writing and a woman writer this year.

#Oscars2019

readordierachel I really liked this movie. Such a wild story! And she and Richard E. Grant both give excellent performances. 6mo
Redwritinghood I have this on hold at the library, but the line is really long for this one. May have to buy a copy. 6mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @readordierachel Yes, for two characters that should have been and in many ways were unlikable characters, I found the story so interesting. And yes, they both played such great characters!! 6mo
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Riveted_Reader_Melissa @readordierachel Did you watch The Wife yet? Out of those 2 ladies, that is going to be the toughest category for me, they both gave stellar performances! They both should get Oscars! 6mo
readordierachel I haven't seen it yet, but I'm looking forward to it! Glenn Close always delivers. It would be cool if there was a tie! Although I'd like it to be a 3-way tie with Olivia Coleman. I know The Favourite isn't for everyone, but I thought she was so compelling in it. 6mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @readordierachel I‘ll agree there, I didn‘t like the movie The Favorite, but I completely agree, she gave a great performance in it! 6mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @Redwritinghood Sadly, I bet if you wait...the line will suddenly get shorter right after the Oscars. 6mo
Redwritinghood @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Good point. Still waiting for now. 6mo
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ambam1987
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Pickpick

Great book & movie!

DrexEdit Ooooo! I'm interested in this! 6mo
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suzisteffen

Just saw this movie and it was simply fantastic. Wow. Now I want to read the book! 🎞📚

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Bibliogeekery
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I'm late to the game but just saw this movie last night. I really loved it! Has anyone read the book? I'm eager to now but there is a major wait at my library for it! 📽️📚

Redwritinghood No, I actually hadn‘t heard of this before. Will have to check it out. 7mo
56 likes2 comments
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WanderingBookaneer
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I was hoping to finish this one as my last #24in48 read, but #TrickyCat has other plans. #CatsOfLitsy

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emilyhaldi
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I reserved this book at the library the day I saw the movie! Melissa McCarthy was fabulous in playing author Lee Israel, who after a declining literary career, begins forging fake letters written by famous writers in order to make some extra cash. After selling over 300 fake letters to collectors, her #masquerade comes under suspicion and the FBI eventually get involved. I can't wait to read about the ordeal from her perspective.
#musicalnewyear

Cinfhen Oohhh, I wanted to see the movie ~ book sounds fascinating too. 7mo
readordierachel Good one! I really enjoyed the movie, too. 7mo
Reviewsbylola That sounds super interesting. 7mo
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vivastory Have been meaning to watch the movie. The book sounds really interesting too! 7mo
Mdargusch Nice to read along with 7mo
L_auren Loved the movie and plan to read the book now! 7mo
emilyhaldi It‘s a super quick read @L_auren and quite funny!! 7mo
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GondorGirl
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Panpan

I'm glad this book was short, because otherwise i'm not sure I would have finished it. Israel is self-absorbed and unrepentant, and I feel she didn't receive nearly the punishment she deserved.

Positively, I can count this book as a "book about a reader or writer" for #LitsyLoveBingo and "unlikable character" for #NonFiction2019. Also, "I" for the #LitsyAtoZ challenge.

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BlameJennyJane
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Mehso-so

This was a quick read of an interesting true story that I mostly picked up because it is now a Melissa McCarthy movie and if she was compelled by the story...

I was ready to be done halfway through only because the tiny print of the the forged copies of letters was annoyingly difficult to read and Israel‘s voice is dry. I‘ll still see the movie though; surely Hollywood has taken the story from Helvetica to Script.

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TheBookDream
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This movie was quite a bit better than I expected tbh

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JoyBlue
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Mehso-so

I might have enjoyed the movie more in this case....

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BlameJennyJane
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#BOTM #BookMail and #BookHaul today. I am incredibly behind on books and have a hundred more I could read before I have any business opening these, but I can‘t help myself. #IHaveAProblem

Jen_Reads I really enjoyed Sheet. It was cute. 9mo
BlameJennyJane Very cool @Jen_Reads ! I hadn‘t even heard of it before I saw it in the shelf at the store and knew I had to have it! 9mo
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Leftcoastzen
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Opened my New Yorker and saw this . Checked out the trailer ,looks really good.#bookishmovies

CaliforniaCay Wow! This sounds really good, book and movie! 10mo
Leftcoastzen @CaliforniaCay Right?! Gonna seek it out. 10mo
vivastory Sounds fascinating! 10mo
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Leftcoastzen @vivastory I like fall better for film.Less Blockbuster focused. Not that there is anything particularly wrong w/ those. 10mo
vivastory Completely agree with you. I'm actually not sure what movie I'm going to see this weekend as there are 3 equally appealing choices: Bad Times at the El Royale, Sisters Brothers & Collette 10mo
Leftcoastzen @vivastory They all sound great,haven‘t seen any of them. Back in my Long Beach days I would have picked one and driven up to Pasadena , gone to Vromans , then the Laemmles 7. Sigh. 10mo
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HrJust
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Mehso-so

This was a quick read (two hours give or take) that was definitely entertaining. I will say though I‘m not sure how I feel about it. I vacillated between amusement and frankly a bit of contempt. It‘s fun to imagine what a certain writer might have thought about one thing or another but her actions were really reprehensible. Perhaps it‘s unkind to say but I couldn‘t help but think: it‘s no wonder people aren‘t taking your calls. Verdict? So-So

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Bostonmomx2
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Movie of this book coming next month to theaters. I haven‘t heard of the book of the person but the movie looks really good.

JoyBlue I liked the movie. I just started the book. 9mo
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