The Chicago Syndicate: The Big Con: Great Hoaxes, Frauds, Grifts, and Swindles in American History is Another Winner from @NateHendley

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The Big Con: Great Hoaxes, Frauds, Grifts, and Swindles in American History is Another Winner from @NateHendley

The Big Con: Great Hoaxes, Frauds, Grifts, and Swindles in American History, examines a broad range of infamous scams, cons, swindles, and hoaxes throughout American history―and considers why human gullibility continues in an age of easy access to information.


  • Explores figures such as "Yellow Kid" Weil, Charles Ponzi (from whom we get the term “Ponzi scheme”), Orson Welles, and Frank Abagnale, among others
  • Provides insight into human nature―gullibility being one aspect of it―throughout the ages, addresses the power of rumor and legend, and identifies the social conditions that have allowed some scams and hoaxes to flourish
  • Presents information that can serve academic research projects as well as fascinate and entertain general readers
  • Features the original stories behind the Hollywood movies The Sting, Catch Me If You Can, Argo, and American Hustle


In addition, The Big Con: Great Hoaxes, Frauds, Grifts, and Swindles in American History, looks at scams and scammers such as Bernie Madoff, online romance fraud, the Nigerian Prince email, disaster fraud, pyramid schemes, medical fakery and other forms of deceit.

Learn about the tricks of the conman trade and how old scams continue to flourish under new guises. Also learn how to avoid being duped by fraudsters.

Very readable. The Big Con is one of those books that you can pick up and start reading anywhere. There is an extensive bibliography at the back for further reading suggestions. Mr Hendley has done sceptics a genuine courtesy by assembling the history of frauds, cons, scams and hoaxes into one beautiful volume.” –The Miramichi Reader

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