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Posted 4/07/2008

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Publisher Chided for Not Detecting Fake Memoir

Fraudulent Memoir!
Most recent in a string of memoirs that turn out to be fake after publication.
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Carpinteria, CA-- Book trade groups, librarians, book clubs, and historical societies have all banded together to decry Generally Awesome Publishing for failing to detect that the recently published book Stuck in the Attic by John H. Crabtree was not a real memoir. The book's authenticity was called into question by the first book critics to receive advance copies.

"Immediately upon turning the first pages of this book it was very clear that there was no way the events described could have happened in the life of Mr. Crabtree," said Lavar Burton, formerly of the book review television program Reading Rainbow. "It seems very likely to me that the executives over at Generally Awesome Publishing did not even read this book prior to its publication. In fact, I question whether they even know how to read."

The book, written from the point of view of a child, tells the story of a family forced to hide out in the top floor of a multi-story mixed use building for several years. While a compelling tale, it does not quite fit with some of the details of Mr. Crabtree's life. For example the book is set in Austria during World War II. The 37 year-old Mr. Crabtree's birth certificate records his birthplace as the Chinatown section of San Fransisco.

"Other details about the book seemed to ring very hollow," said book critic Noam Talkinbout. "For example, there is one section in the book that retells a conversation the parents have about the child as the child overhears them talking. The parents use the possessive pronoun, 'her' and 'hers' several times."

The book is also peppered with references to Jewish religious observances. This struck people familiar with the author as particularly odd since Mr Crabtree's parents have been senior lay ministers at the Catholic diocese of San Francisco for over 45 years.

Perhaps the most controversial element of the book is Crabtree's repeated talk of the Nazi soldiers and informants. The Jewish Defense League and the Jewish Ant-Defamation league have expressed their outrage at the attempt to capitalize on the tragic experiences of European Jews during the Second World War. They are further troubled by the lack of oversight from Generally Awesome Publishing that allowed this book to make it to printing.

Many are confused as to how Generally Awesome could have missed the warning signs and red flags indicating that the memoir of Mr. Crabtree was not what it purported to be.

Generally Awesome Publishing came under fire for a similar incident eight months ago when they published a memoir that was sold as a personal memoir about the struggle to learn to speak sign language and to learn to read by Coco the Gorilla. After the book's publication, documents surfaced proving that the book was the work of a ghost author and that Coco the Gorilla had not even been consulted during the writing process.

When reached for comment Generally Awesome public relations officials released a written statement to the press. In it the company stated, "We stand behind the editorial quality of our publishing division. We regret this unfortunate event and apologize to any offended parties out there. We remain committed to providing the highest quality books to our reading audience. We will continue to strive to publish books of the high caliber of our most famous titles, like 404 of Best Website '404 Missing Page' Error Message Pranks."

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