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False Memoir by Katherine Luck

Based on an Untrue Story 

False Memoir is an online fictional memoir. Everything about the author and the setting are true. The characters and the plot are fictional.

False Memoir was inspired by the furtively fictionalized memoirs of such writers as James Frey (A Million Little Pieces), impossible to verify but desperately journalistic reminiscences like The Night of the Gun by David Carr, and the unabashedly inaccurate but entertaining tales of David Sedaris and Mishna Wolff.

Note: False Memoir contains some harsh language.


A complete novel

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Listed: Sep 28, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

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Editor’s First Impression

By Chris Poirier, editor

Sep 28, 2011: A scattered but easy read with a noir-ish flavour. The crime elements are merely a backdrop in the first half-dozen entries, but they provide some intrigue to what is otherwise largely a character piece.

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Most Helpful Member Reviews

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Quirky (un)true story

By G.S. Williams, author of The Surprising Life and Death of Diggory Franklin

Sep 29, 2011: I strangely kind of love "False Memoir" right now.

There needs to be some editing done. On occasion, the tense shifts from first person past to first person present, and there’s the occasional dropped word or typo. These things are easy to fix.

But the narrative voice of the main character, Katherine, is funny and well-paced, even as she’s trying to gather information about Jack O’Lies, a reporter whose wife was murdered by a serial killer.

(I have to confess, the first time I read the name "Jack O’Lies" I wondered if it was a villain’s name, like the Joker,—come on, Jack O’ Lantern?—but no, that’s just his strange, possibly Irish, surname.)

So far it seems like a well-written character piece and crime drama with some intrigue. But what made me love it today (and we’ll see if that continues) is the asides—Katherine comes across as funny, noting absurd observations in her tone alongside the details. But on top of that, there are links to other websites scattered throughout the text to add subtext, background and depth—as if the story is actually part of the larger world.

For example, when she wants to make a point about how there are few daily newspapers, let alone crime-beat reporters, she doesn’t link to a real article about how the Internet has caused a decline in paper sales. No, she links to the Onion, and an article about how the decline in paper sales has been partially stalled because kidnappers like to buy the newspaper for pictures with victims to prove that the date is accurate and the victim is still alive. It’s absurd and silly, and yet also dark. And I think that link shows the kind of sense of humour and tone the author herself has, and that says a lot about where this story might be going.

Dark, funny, clever, and a little twisted.

So far, so good.

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