Oprah’s Frey

Is it just me, or does Oprah Winfrey seem a little too defensive about her part in the James Frey deal?

James Frey is the author of the immensely popular memoir "A Million Little Pieces."  It recounts his many years drug abuse.  The book has struck a chord with untold numbers of people, many of them struggling with their own addiction problems.   But the authenticity of parts of it have been called into question.  Apparently, some scenes in the nonfiction book were fabricated.  Others were embellished beyond the recognition of others who were there at the time. 

"A Million Little Pieces" has been an Oprah Book Club selection. It took what was a relatively obscure book and brought it to the top of the best-seller lists.  That’s what Oprah’s Book Club does.

Frey  defended his book on Larry King Live by saying in part that a memoir is a relatively new literary form and the literary community has yet to come to terms with exactly what that means.  What is a nonfiction book?  It was a somewhat thin, but pausible argument.

Near the end of the King thing Oprah called to show her support for Frey and his book calling the fracas "much ado about nothing."  Then a funny thing happened.

After her endorsement on the King show, Frey was invited back on Oprah this week where she proceeded to rip into him for "letting down" fans of his book and demanding an explanation.  "I feel you conned us all," said the Queen of Daytime.  To me it seems she was more upset that her own credibility has taken a hit.  She said she felt "duped" by him.  I’m thinking Frey felt more than a little duped by O. 

2 Responses

  1. nodakguy

    I totally agree with you Terry. She didn’t feel “duped” or lied to, she was mad because she was getting some bad publicity and Oprah does not like bad publicity. Oprah thinks she is an expert on everything, I could not believe how she rippped the editor/publisher of Frey’s book and told this person how books should be edited.

  2. Janet Elaine Smith

    As a Red River Valley author of 15 novels, (I live in Grand Forks) I am trying to figure out which one of them to try to pass off as non-fiction so I can get on Oprah too! And I do agree about Oprah’s rescinding her backing of the book. It reminds me of a little kid who isn’t at all sorry for what they did wrong; they are only sorry that they got caught.

Comments are closed.