Update: Random House is actully NOT offering refunds for debunked A Million Little Pieces

Oh, how meta – a debunked story about a debunked story! The report, carried by Reuters and Yahoo and others* claimed that Random House was offering “unprecedented” refunds for A Million Little Pieces. Not so, says Random House: “Contrary to erroneous published reports, Random House, Inc. is not offering a special refund on A Million Little Pieces… Yesterday we had 15 calls to our customer service line specific to A Million Little Pieces and fewer than that today.”

Larry King also contradicted the erroneous reports on his show last night, on which Frey was the guest. Frey called the book a “subjective retelling” of true events as “an individual’s perceptions of what happens in his own life,” and stood behind the “essential truths” of the story. Most significant get for Larry: a phone call from Oprah Winfrey standing firmly behind Frey and the book, saying that “the underlying message of redemption” still resonated, with her and with millions of readers. Oprah saves publishing, hooray!

Full GalleyCat item here; our original erroneous item after the jump, for posterity’s sake and also because we think it has the makings of a good memoir.

NB Please note that Fishbowl corrected this post before CNN corrected this or Reuters corrected this. Please also note that CNN posted this story at 12:32 am, after Larry King’s program. On CNN.

Frey Grilled a la King [GC]
Writer Says He Made Up Some Details [NYT]

*Late-breaking story on the CBC.


Original Fishbowl item about rumored Random House refunds for “A Million Little Pieces”; corrected above.

Breaking: Random House offers refunds for debunked A Million Little Pieces

Wow. Despite the sanguine front and Monday’s “we stand in support of our author,” something was moving in the back channels at Random House today: they have said that they will refund readers who bought James Frey‘s rehab memoir A Million Little Pieces from the publisher after the controversy surrounding Monday’s &#233xpos&#233 by The Smoking Gun.

Frey responded to the allegations on his personal website: “I stand by my book, and my life, and I won’t dignify this bullshit with any sort of further response.”