NEW YORK – Readers who bought author James Frey's fabrication-filled memoir, "A Million Little Pieces," may get a refund following a judge's tentative approval of a settlement in the case.
U.S. District Judge Richard J. Holwell set a Nov. 2 date to consider final approval of the deal reached last year. On Monday, he gave his preliminary approval to the agreement, calling it "fair, reasonable, adequate, and in the best interests of the settlement class."
The agreement calls for the defendants, Random House Inc. and James Frey, to spend $2.35 million (euro1.74 million) to fully refund readers who bought the best-seller before Jan. 26, 2006, the day Frey and his publisher acknowledged that he had made up parts of the book. Claims would have to be filed by Oct. 1.
Once the Web site is in place, readers will be able to obtain claim forms by visiting http://www.amlpsettlement.com.
Readers filed lawsuits around the United States that were then consolidated into the case heard by Holwell.
"A Million Little Pieces" exploded in sales after Oprah Winfrey chose it for her book club in fall 2005. In January 2006, the Web site The Smoking Gun revealed that Frey's memoir of addiction and recovery contained numerous fabrications. Winfrey initially defended Frey, but soon changed her mind and berated him in person on her TV show.