Random House Calls Sophomore's Response 'Deeply Troubling and Disingenuous'

'This...is nothing less than an act of literary identity theft'

Steve Ross, the senior vice president and publisher of Crown Publishers and Three Rivers Press, subsidiaries of Random House that have released Megan McCafferty's novels, issued the following statement this afternoon:

"We find both the responses of Little Brown and their author Kaayva [sic] Viswanathan deeply troubling and disingenuous. Ms. Viswanathan's claim that similarities in her phrasing were 'unconscious' or 'unintentional' is suspect. We have documented more than forty passages from Kaavya Viswanathan's recent publication 'How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life' that contain identical language and/or common scene or dialogue structure from Megan McCafferty's first two books, 'Sloppy Firsts' and 'Second Helpings.' This extensive taking from Ms. McCafferty's books is nothing less than an act of literary identity theft.

"Based on the scope and character of the similarities, it is inconceivable that this was a display of youthful innocence or an unconscious or unintentional act. We are extremely proud of Megan McCafferty's success to date with 400,000 copies of her books in print and her most recent book CHARMED THIRDS (4/11/06) already climbing the bestseller lists. We will be supporting our author by seeking an amicable and timely resolution to this situation."