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King Con

The compelling tale of virtuosic hustler Edgar LaPlante whose greatest talent, and eventually his comeuppance, was his inability to give up the con.

Edgar LaPlante, a charming and charismatic performer, reinvented himself as Cherokee war hero Chief White Elk, under the pretence of raising money for starving children. Eventually, he found his real mark: a wealthy countess. LaPlante conned her out of the equivalent of $101 million in today’s currency, but after hiring a detective to investigate LaPlante, he was imprisoned. Yet he maintained the charade upon his release, in spite of all the damning evidence.

With humour and cinematic verve, Willetts takes readers on an unforgettable journey through the outlandish escapades of a man who embodied both the Jazz Age’s extravagances and its dark, drug-infused underbelly.

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