I have been thinking about the Oprah show where she scolded James Frey.  Shame, shame on Oprah.

I was a fan of Oprah.  Smart woman.  Good business person.  Brought interesting subjects to the table.  Published a magazine with pretty good content.  Got Americans to start reading. 

James Frey wrote a really good book.  In fact, he wrote 2 really good books.  A Million Little Pieces and My Friend Leonard.  It comes out that content in the books were not completely true even though it was sold as a memoir.  But, the majority of it was true and after all, it was his recall, no one elses.

Oprah put A Million Little pieces on her book of the month club.  Then, she found out that the book was part fiction.  She came out saying that she still supported the book.  Then changed in mid stream.  She invited James Frey back on her show to tsk tsk him.  It was completely self serving and disgusting.  Does Oprah now feel better about herself?

My friend brought a good point.  Oprah has celebrities on her show all the time who lie to the public about how they live their lives.  But, that is OK? 

Shame shame on Oprah.  I was a fan but she has definitely gotten too big for her britches.

Comments (Archived):

  1. Mark Frisk

    I agree that Oprah was more than a little slippery on this one.

    And yes authors have been known to embellish things in works of non-fiction.

    However, Frey is guilty of far more than embellishing.

    His embellishing was of the whole cloth variety, and the vociferous objections to his book center around his horrific depiction of treatment at the very thinly-disguised treatment center that everyone knows is Hazeldon. Many are concerned that he paints such a dark and disturbing portrait that people who desperately need help in dealing with their addictions will be discouraged from seeking that help.

    I think that concern is legitimate and well-placed.

  2. julesj66

    It makes no difference to me knowing parts of the story were embellished. It was still an enjoyable story. If it had changed my life for the better, would I care? Who knows, but that is not the case for me. I respect and enjoy Oprah tremendously, but if she wants to grill people about “truth” perhaps she should have GWB on sometime.

  3. Lynn Souther

    Frey’s book is DANGEROUS. Obviously the people who defend Frey know NOTHING about RECOVERY. I spent 20 years trying to help addicts break through their DENIAL. Frey’s DANGEROUS advice to “HOLD ON” leaves me sickened. Hold on to what? The bottle, the crack pipe, the needle, DENIAL??? His sensationalized “war stories” confirm Frey is a dry drunk with NO PROGRAM OF RECOVERY!!! For those of us spending our lives working with the Frey’s in the world he proves that he is “an ego maniac with an inferiority complex”. Frey and Oprah are two separate topics at this point. Oprah embarrassed herself and lost credibility. Frey’s message will kill people. With whom should we be more concerned??? Talk to a recovering person of at least 10 years. 25 years in AA/NA, counseling addicts for 20 years has given me insight like the counselors at Hazelton. If you want to know what’s important,talk to them. Lynn