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Cassie Edwards Plagiarism Recap

Jan 7, 2008 the Smart Bitches Trashy Books site post examples of text from several Cassie Edwards’ novels and the sources from which they might be copied. SB Sarah has combined all the comparisons into one easy to read PDF. List of links:

Jan 8, 2008 Jane urges the community to talk openly about Plagiarism.

Jan 9, 2008 Jane writes to publicity department of Penguin asking if there is a public response to the allegations. Signet responds with a reply:

Signet takes plagiarism seriously, and would act swiftly were there justification for such allegations against one of its authors. But in this case Ms. Edwards has done nothing wrong.

Jan 9, 2008AP reporter picks up story and gets statement from author Edwards.

"When you write historical romances, you’re not asked to do that," Cassie Edwards told The Associated Press, speaking earlier this week from her home in Mattoon, Ill.

Jan 10, 2008 Jane posts her open letter to Penguin regarding her disappointment on its stance of plagiarism. Other readers provide copies of their eloquent statements.

Jan 10, 2008 Nora Roberts provides statement to AP on issue, condemning plagiarism.

Jan 10, 2008 RWA gives a public response that says it does not condone plagiarism and says that there is a process in place to address allegations. The public statement is not entirely clear that it will be investigated as the process RWA refers to requires someone to swear out a complaint.

Jan 10, 2008 Janet of Dear Author provides an articulate argument against a boycott.

Jan 11, 2008 Penguin provides a revised statement

Our original comments were based on Signet’s review of a limited selection of passages. We believe the situation deserves further review. Therefore we will be examining all of Ms. Edwards’ books that we publish, and based on the outcome of that review we will take action to handle the matter accordingly. We want to make it known that Signet takes any and all allegations of plagiarism very seriously.

Jan 12, 2008 Evidence surfaces that Cassie Edwards’ Savage Dream (c. 1990) bears remarkable similarities to 1930 Pulitizer Prize winning novelist’s Oliver La Forge’s Laughing Boy.

Jan 13, 2008 Alleged defense by Cassie Edwards appears, arguing the following:

I feel picked on now as our Native American Indians have always been picked on throughout history. I am trying to spread the word about them and what do I get? Spiteful women who have found a way to bring attention to themselves, by getting in the media in this horrible way.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Random
    Jan 11, 2008 @ 12:14:58

    Do you have space for how Nora has given a condemning statement to the AP as well? It was on the front page of today.

  2. Agn├Ęs
    Jan 15, 2008 @ 19:10:06

    And Paul Tolme (he of black-footed ferrets fame) wrote an article for Newsweek commenting his involvement in the plagiarism fiasco.

  3. I Read Everything » Blog Archive » The Shroud of the Thwacker by Chris Elliott
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 23:19:10

    […] Did I Read This Book: Back when the Cassie Edwards Black Ferret plagiarism mess hit (yeah, read that hot mess when you’ve got some time on your hands because it is hilarious […]

  4. I Read Everything » Blog Archive » Shroud of the Thwacker by Chris Elliott
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 14:15:18

    […] Did I Read This Book: Back when the Cassie Edwards Black Ferret plagiarism mess hit (yeah, read that hot mess when you’ve got some time on your hands because it is hilarious […]

  5. Cassie
    Oct 28, 2011 @ 18:18:18

    I have been reading Cassie Edwards’ books ever since I can remember & I know that she couldn’t have plagiarized any of her books against any of Nora Roberts’ books. Not even on accident her books are great & if you take them away you’ll be robbing young kids of learning about their indian heritage.

  6. Lauren
    Apr 17, 2012 @ 07:27:29

    @Cassie: Hmmm. You need to read a little more. Cassie Edwards wasn’t accused of copying word for word Nora Roberts works. She was found to have copied, word for word, everything from Pulitzer Prize works to articles on endangered animals. ( In fact, in one of her books I found a passage that sounded eerily familiar to my grade five essay on a visit to Ksan.)

    If you want your children to learn about their Native heritage they would be better of reading the textbooks that she took the information from, rather than her novels. IMO.

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