Oprah by Kitty Kelley
A Biography

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For the past twenty-five years, no one has been better at revealing secrets than Oprah Winfrey. On what is arguably the most influential show in television history, she has gotten her guests—often the biggest celebrities in the world—to bare their love lives, explore their painful pasts, admit their transgressions, reveal their pleasures, and explore their demons. In turn, Oprah has repeatedly allowed her audience to share in her own life story, opening up about the sexual abuse in her past and discussing her romantic relationships, her weight problems, her spiritual beliefs, her charitable donations, and her strongly held views on the state of the world.

After a quarter of a century of the Oprah-ization of America, can there be any more secrets left to reveal?

Yes. Because Oprah has met her match.

Kitty Kelley has, over the same period of time, fearlessly and relentlessly investigated and written about the world’s most revered icons: Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Frank Sinatra, Nancy Reagan, England’s Royal Family, and the Bush dynasty. In her #1 bestselling biographies, she has exposed truths and exploded myths to uncover the real human beings that exist behind their manufac¬tured facades.

Turning her reportorial sights on Oprah, Kelley has now given us an unvarnished look at the stories Oprah’s told and the life she’s led. Kelley has talked to Oprah’s closest family members and business associates. She has obtained court records, birth certificates, financial and tax records, and even copies of Oprah’s legendary (and punishing) confidentiality agreements. She has probed every aspect of Oprah Winfrey’s life, and it is as if she’s written the most extraordinary segment of The Oprah Winfrey Show ever filmed—one in which Oprah herself is finally and fully revealed.

There is a case to be made, and it is certainly made in this book, that Oprah Winfrey is an important, and even great, figure of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. But there is also a case to be made that even greatness needs to be examined and put under a microscope. Fact must be separated from myth, truth from hype. Kitty Kelley has made that separation, showing both sides of Oprah as they have never been shown before. In doing so she has written a psychologically perceptive and meticulously researched book that will surprise and thrill everyone who reads it.

About Kitty Kelley

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Kitty Kelley is the internationally acclaimed bestselling author of Jackie Oh!; Elizabeth Taylor: The Last Star; His Way: The Unauthorized Biography of Frank Sinatra; Nancy Reagan: The Unauthorized Biography; The Royals; and The Family: The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty. The last four titles were all #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. Kelley has been honored by her peers with such awards as the Outstanding Author Award from the American Society of Journalists and Authors for her "courageous writing on popular cul­ture," the Philip M. Stern Award for her "outstanding service to writers and the writing profession," the Medal of Merit from the Lotos Club of New York City, and the 2005 PEN Oakland Literary Censorship Award. Her articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, People, Ladies' Home Journal, McCall's, the Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her physician husband, Jonathan Zucker.
Published April 9, 2010 by Crown Archetype. 544 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Oprah

The New York Times

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(“I really like me, I really do.” “When you mention great actresses, you’ll have to say my name.” “I know people really really love me, love me, love me.”) Her devotees are probably too loyal to enjoy Ms.

Apr 11 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography

The Globe and Mail

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(Her father was not, in fact, her father, as she later discovered.) Her adolescence was chaotic and deeply troubled.

Apr 16 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography

Entertainment Weekly

The essence of the book is familiar — Oprah's hardscrabble beginnings, her teen pregnancy, her career — but sprinkled with titillating snippets: Oprah's family says that the talk-show host embellishes her past;

Apr 14 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography

The Washington Post

(The 5,500-square-foot Oprah Store, Kelley tells us, offers "O pajamas, O candles, O metallic purses, O canvas bags, O caps, O mugs, O place mats, even grocery bags marked 'grOceries,' " as well as Winfrey's personal hand-me-downs, ranging from size 10 to 18).

Apr 15 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography


A complex personality, Oprah Winfrey — the most successful African-American woman in this nation’s history — is vibrant, smart, diligent and generous.

Apr 24 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography


Answer: at a factory farm, where hogs, chickens, cattle, and even fish live the short, unhappy lives that environmental lawyer, activist, and rancher Nicolette Hahn Niman depicts, with uncommon restraint, in Righteous Porkchop.

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According to this account, Oprah wouldn’t go, “until she devoured the whole thing.” This flipside of the Winfrey you see on TV is said to be “cold, standoffish and very difficult.” Plus, she has a bad habit of lying about and turning her back on her friends.

May 11 2010 | Read Full Review of Oprah: A Biography

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