Fake "Memoirs"

Are any of the following books familiar?

All were presented as really interesting autobiographical memoirs written by people who had some amazing experiences. There's only one problem: all four were fiction. They were hoax memoirs. The first one (Frey) was exposed in January 2006 and the last next in February and March 2008. The last one was exposed in January 2015 when the authors admitted that the boy (Alex) had made up the story to get attention. The degree of fictionalization varies, but none are truly autobiographical.

In the third case, author Margaret Seltzer (writing as Jones) executed an elaborate hoax, proving bogus materials, photos, letters and "siblings" to the publisher's fact checkers. On 5 March 2008 the Los Angeles Times said "No nonfiction publisher can afford serious fact-checking anymore; most do none at all." They also note that a simple novel (fiction) does not attract anywhere near the publicity and promotion that such a "memoir" will. The economics of the business provide a motivation for fakery.

For more, read the Smithsonian magazine article about the first three.