Entertainment News: Oprah's "Fiercely Bad Manners?"

Published July 31, 2007

Posted July 30, 2007 - Two years ago, Oprah Winfrey put author James Frey on the spot over inconsistencies in the manuscript of his book, "A Million Little Pieces."

Now, Frey strikes back - sort of.

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Nan A. Talese was with Frey on that show. At a session of a nonfiction writers' conference in Dallas on Saturday, she accused Winfrey of "fiercely bad manners" and said she would have done nothing differently in how she handled Frey's manuscript.

According to The Dallas Morning News, Talese stated, "I'm afraid I'm unapologetic of the whole thing. And the only person who should be apologetic is Oprah Winfrey."

The book was a bestseller after Winfrey chose it for her book club in fall 2005. Frey later acknowledged that the memoir contained more than a few little pieces of fiction, and Winfrey, who initially defended the author, denounced him in person on her TV show.

Talese was unapologetic when asked to account for Frey's use of fictitious elements in a supposedly factual account of addiction and recovery. "When someone starts out and says, 'I have been an alcoholic. I have lied. I have cheated.' ... you do not think this is going to be the New Testament," said Talese.

In May, a judge approved a tentative settlement calling for publishing house Random House and Frey to refund $2.35 million to those who bought his book before his appearance on Winfrey's show.

Written by BET-Staff

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