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, Noël 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. [publisher]
Contents and pigeons -- Wretched and excessive -- A Mayan minute -- The flies -- Slippery slope -- Cousin Sidney -- Louise -- Riffing -- Faux Louise -- Dorothy -- Noel -- The jig is up -- Violets for his furs -- Trimester two -- This ain't no country club, Lee -- Prep time -- My third trimester.