Oprah and Eggs

Oprah tries damage repair.

n a stunning switch from dismissive to disgusted, Oprah Winfrey took on one of her chosen authors, James Frey, accusing him on live television of lying about "A Million Little Pieces" and letting down the many fans of his memoir of addiction and recovery.

"I feel duped," she said Thursday on her syndicated talk show. "But more importantly, I feel that you betrayed millions of readers."

Frey, who found himself booed in the same Chicago studio where he had been embraced not long ago, acknowledge that he had lied.

A sometimes angry, sometimes tearful Winfrey asked Frey why he "felt the need to lie." Audience members often groaned and gasped at Frey's halting, stuttered admissions that certain facts and characters had been "altered" but that the essence of his memoir was real.

"I don't think it is a novel," Frey said of his book, which had initially been offered to publishers, and rejected by many, as fiction. "I still think it's a memoir."


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