Fuss over Frey still fomenting

July 31, 2007 at 2:46 PM

GRAPEVINE, Texas, July 31 (UPI) -- Doubleday editor Nan Talese used an appearance in Texas to voice her displeasure with Oprah Winfrey's televised smack-down of author James Frey.

Winfrey took the author of "A Million Little Pieces" to task during her show in January 2006 for lies and exaggerations in his book. Also on the program was Talese, then an editor at Random House, which published the bestseller.

At a recent literary convention in Grapevine, Texas, Talese swiped at Winfrey, calling her confrontation of Frey on television "mean and self-serving," Time magazine reported. Talese said Frey described himself as a liar, a cheater and an addict and under those circumstances she did not think every word he wrote should be taken as true.

During a convention speech, author Joyce Carol Oates discussed truth in the context of a memoir. During a question-and-answer session that followed, a self-described Oprah fan said Frey fooled those who believed his book.

In an e-mailed response to Time magazine, Oates clarified her statement, saying a personal memoir "has always been highly 'fictionalized' -- colored with an individual's own 'emotional truth.'"

A judge recently ordered Random House to refund $2.35 million to readers.

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