The Librarian Extraordinare has an interesting post today on the whole James Frey firestorm.
Here’s my two cents: I think this may have ramifications for the publishing industry – which, judging from the things I’ve heard, needs some examination. The fact that his publisher suggested that the book should be marketed as non-fiction when the author himself declared it fiction is….I’m struggling for the word. Hideous? Evil? Deceptive? Stupid? The publisher also admitted that they hadn’t checked the facts of the story at all. I’m sorry, but if you’re a reputable publishing house, and an author is presenting a work of non-fiction, checking the facts is part of your job.
I suppose it’s our titillation factor kicking in; these stories are somehow more delicious if we think they actually happened. But, really, all they would have had to do is put the statement somewhere on the book “based on a true story.” Done. No drama, no media. No Oprah scolding.
Frankly, I haven’t read the thing. Doesn’t speak to me at all. And now, I really don’t care. But it will be interesting to see if the publishing folks chat about this and clean up their own backyards.