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Catch Me if You Can by Frank W. Abagnale
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Catch Me if You Can (1980)

by Frank W. Abagnale, Frank Abagnale

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Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
The first 200 or so pages--I was SO into. Then, the repetitiveness about how smart he is, how young he was, how he managed to rip of countless people, etc, etc..just got old.

It was a really different feeling than I had from the movie. In the movie, I felt bad for poor Leonardo DiCaprio, and didn't want him to get caught. In the book, I couldn't wait for him to get caught. (And was a little peeved that he ended the book when he escaped--leaving it to the ghost writer to clarify in the afterword.)

When he was in his French jail cell...which was pretty gruesome, I admit, I didn't feel bad for him. Maybe I'm getting old, and crotchety, but he kept mentioning how much money he was stealing, and I kept thinking, who REALLY paid for that? Airline costs go up to cover it? Bank fees increase? Man, I'm an old fogey that I care about this stuff.

My recommendation: If you liked the book, leave it at that. ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
The first 200 or so pages--I was SO into. Then, the repetitiveness about how smart he is, how young he was, how he managed to rip of countless people, etc, etc..just got old.

It was a really different feeling than I had from the movie. In the movie, I felt bad for poor Leonardo DiCaprio, and didn't want him to get caught. In the book, I couldn't wait for him to get caught. (And was a little peeved that he ended the book when he escaped--leaving it to the ghost writer to clarify in the afterword.)

When he was in his French jail cell...which was pretty gruesome, I admit, I didn't feel bad for him. Maybe I'm getting old, and crotchety, but he kept mentioning how much money he was stealing, and I kept thinking, who REALLY paid for that? Airline costs go up to cover it? Bank fees increase? Man, I'm an old fogey that I care about this stuff.

My recommendation: If you liked the book, leave it at that. ( )
  csweder | Jul 8, 2014 |
What an amazing life, but also terrifying. Well written and as it was. ( )
  nilbett | Jun 14, 2014 |
[b:Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake|375789|Catch Me If You Can The True Story of a Real Fake|Frank W. Abagnale|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1174275131s/375789.jpg|985716] is all about how a 16 year old boy became the most daring con-man in US history. Over the course of 4 years, Frank had stolen millions of dollars and flown all over the world posing as a piolet for Pan-Am airlines. Oh, and did I mention he also posed as a doctor, lawyer and school teacher?

Not only was he caught (several times before finally being put away) but he was later employed by the US government to help catch those trying to do what he did, swindle banks and companies. He was even the subject of a 2002 movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks. Wow, did he ever come out of it looking like a million bucks.

I really enjoyed this book. Granted, it took me some time to get through it - probably because I've seen the movie a few times and really wasn't that excited to find out what happened. I mean, they basically explain the plot on the back. Even though I knew a lot of the details, my jaw dropped several times just blown away with how he accomplished all of this.

In order to bluff his way through all of these careers you not only have to be a good liar, you need to have full confidence in what you're telling someone. The minute you start to expose some doubt in yourself; the suspicions will begain to arise. Of course, with modern technology, schemes like this must become increasingly difficult to succeed with. Back in the '60s, cheques were mailed and when their "phoney-ness" (yes, I used that word) was discovered, Frank was long gone.

There are some minor details that apparently have been heightened. Frank said that when banks were called to discuss the validity of Mr. Abegnale's claims, they refused to discuss the events. Frank noted that if a teenager had stolen thousands of dollars from your company - you'd be pretty embarassed going over the details.

Overall, I really enjoyed it. I think that you're going to get a far more entertaining story from the movie version but I'm a little biased as I had seen it prior to reading the book. Also, the movie has Tom Hanks. TOM HANKS. ( )
  branimal | Apr 1, 2014 |
I love the movie and I really enjoyed this book. Now if I could only make it out to NYC to see the musical I'll have hit all the mediums.

This book really was tons of fun. Abagnale managed to elude law enforcement for five years before being sentenced to a year in a French prison - etc. etc. The man is brilliant. When I saw the movie I remember thinking, 'This couldn't be done in this day and age of computers' but in his afterword Abagnale talks about how these kinds of crimes are actually easier to perpetrate -- think identity theft.

Anyway, the book includes hijinks and side stories that are left out of the movie for the interest of time. I actually found the description of the treatment in the French and Swedish prisons to be one of the most fascinating parts of the book.

Pretty easy, definitely worth the read.
( )
  steadfastreader | Mar 18, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Frank W. Abagnaleprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abagnale, Frankmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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To my dad
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A man's alter ego is nothing more than his favorite image of himself.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
The Amazing True Story of the Youngest and Most Daring Con Man in the History of Fun and Profit!  
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0767905385, Paperback)

When this true-crime story first appeared in 1980, it made the New York Times bestseller list within weeks. Two decades later, it's being rereleased in conjunction with a film version produced by DreamWorks. In the space of five years, Frank Abagnale passed $2.5 million in fraudulent checks in every state and 26 foreign countries. He did it by pioneering implausible and brazen scams, such as impersonating a Pan Am pilot (puddle jumping around the world in the cockpit, even taking over the controls). He also played the role of a pediatrician and faked his way into the position of temporary resident supervisor at a hospital in Georgia. Posing as a lawyer, he conned his way into a position in a state attorney general's office, and he taught a semester of college-level sociology with a purloined degree from Columbia University.

The kicker is, he was actually a teenage high school dropout. Now an authority on counterfeiting and secure documents, Abagnale tells of his years of impersonations, swindles, and felonies with humor and the kind of confidence that enabled him to pull off his poseur performances. "Modesty is not one of my virtues. At the time, virtue was not one of my virtues," he writes. In fact, he did it all for his overactive libido--he needed money and status to woo the girls. He also loved a challenge and the ego boost that came with playing important men. What's not disclosed in this highly engaging tale is that Abagnale was released from prison after five years on the condition that he help the government write fraud-prevention programs. So, if you're planning to pick up some tips from this highly detailed manifesto on paperhanging, be warned: this master has already foiled you. --Lesley Reed

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:02:30 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

The world's most sought-after con man wrote $2.5 million in bad checks, practiced law without a license, practiced medicine with no medical training, and co-piloted a Pan Am jet with a fake license. Slated for production at DreamWorks Entertainment, and now updated with a new Afterworld, "Catch Me If You Can" contains all of the elements of the most wildly imaginative fiction, except that Abagnale's exploits actually happened.… (more)

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