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Publisher's Summary

By the time James Frey enters a drug and alcohol treatment facility, he has so thoroughly ravaged his body that the doctors are shocked he is still alive. Inside the clinic, he is surrounded by patients as troubled as he: a judge, a mobster, a former world-champion boxer, and a fragile former prostitute. To James, their friendship and advice seem stronger and truer than the clinic's droning dogma of How to Recover.

James refuses to consider himself a victim of anything but his own bad decisions. He insists on accepting sole accountability for the person he has been and the person he may become, which he feels runs counter to his counselor's recipes for recovery. He must fight to survive on his own terms, for reasons close to his own heart. And he must battle the ever-tempting chemical trip to oblivion.

An uncommonly genuine account of a life destroyed and reconstructed, and a provocative alternative understanding of the nature of addiction and the meaning of recovery, A Million Little Pieces marks the debut of a bold and talented literary voice.

*In January 2006, the author and publisher of this title acknowledged that a number of facts had been altered and incidents embellished.

Find out what life is like for James Frey post-rehab; make his second memoir, My Friend Leonard, your next listen.
Or check out more selections from Oprah's Book Club.

©2003 James Frey; (P)2003 HighBridge Company

Critic Reviews

"A Million Little Pieces is this generation's most comprehensive book about addiction: a heartbreaking memoir defined by its youthful tone and poetic honesty." (Bret Easton Ellis)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Linnea
  • Crystal Lake, IL, USA
  • 11-11-05

A Million Little Pieces

Great book!!! I feel as though I lived and felt this book! The author is brutally honest in this memoir. At times, it was difficult to listen to -because of the language and the intense anger that James, the main character, feels. But, it was one of the most memorable books I've read (or listened to) in a long time. The narrator does an outstanding job "portraying" James. I can't wait to listen to the next book by James Frey!

  • Overall
  • Terry
  • Williamsburg, VA, USA
  • 11-09-05

Riveting, but not for the squeamish

I had a hard time putting this story down. I thought that it was a fascinating. This story is not for you if you are squeamish or offended by explicit language. I have a hard time believing parts of the story (dental work without any local anesthetic). I was hooked by the story and the description of the world that James was living in. Unlike some of the other reviewers, I did like the characters and did want stay with them until the end to see how they made out. Yes, James is contrary, and yes, he does fight against the program he is ostensibly in. No, I do not think many people could get straight and stay straight with their will power alone. I think the statistics on success for drug and alcohol treatment speak for themselves. I do think that there are a few rare individuals that would be able to do it by sure force of will, but they are in the minority. Overall, I highly recommend the book.

The narrator was excellent and added to the enjoyment of listening to the book.

  • Overall
  • Kelley
  • Burlington, VT, USA
  • 11-09-05

A Million Little Pieces

This audiobook was so well performed by the reader, that I felt as though I were a participant at a play. Incredibly captivating, and heartwrenching story.

  • Overall

Need some courage to change your life?

James Frey's story is captivating, gripping, heart-wrenching and honest. In a world where people portray themselves as victims, it was inspiring to meet someone who takes responsibility for his own decisions.

The narration by Oliver Wyman is the BEST that I have ever heard (and I've been listening to audible / recorded books for years).

I read this book as a "kick-off" to motivate me to stop taking a drug prescribed for traumatic stress syndrome several years ago. It helped alot - so far so good. Thanks for telling us your story, James.

  • Overall

Breathtaking and unbelieveable...

This is a very inspirational story that on several occasions will have taken your breath away. Amazing detail taken with each word spoken by the narrator. This is an unbelievable story with twist and turns that won't let you stop listening.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Marie
  • Falls Church, VA, USA
  • 02-14-06

Horrible book

Juvenile writing style, repetitive, vulgar language and descriptions obviously inserted for their shock value. Unconvincing, flat characters. Certainly can't understand what Oprah and her staff saw in this book, even before it was revealed to be largely fabricated. Moreover, while Frey may have been an addict, the book does a great disservice to the work of AA which has helped untold numbers of addicts to recover.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Well writtne

This book is well written and keeps you engaged till the very end. This is not the normal kind of book I read. I selected this book after hearing about it on the Oprah Show and got interested. It is a very moving book about this young man's journey in reclaiming his life. I really admired him and was cheering at the end. This book is very encouraging for all parents who have kids that are doing it "the hard way".

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

you will die of boredom and monotony

I started listening to this book on a long trip and continued until the end only because it was the only selection on my ipod that I hadn't heard yet. I wanted to quit after 10 minutes and that feeling stayed with me through the end of the book.

If given a choice between listening to this selection again or having a root canal without novocaine on every single tooth, I'd choose the dental work in a second. The combination of the endless repetition, the laconic narration, and the mind-numbing minutiae made me grind my teeth throughout. Stay away from this one!

10 of 27 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Walter
  • Branford, CT, USA
  • 01-01-06


This book is an intense moving story,
you can't put it down.

2 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance

Not for all minds

Too much f bombing to get to the multiple personality info I wanted

0 of 1 people found this review helpful