Media mogul OPRAH WINFREY stood up for troubled writer James Frey when he appeared on news show Larry King LIVE last night (11JAN06) to defend himself against claims he fabricated elements of his life in his memoir.

Winfrey has championed Frey's harrowing tale of redemption, A MILLION LITTLE PIECES - even naming it her Book Club choice last autumn (05) - and she shocked host LARRY KING and Frey when she called in to support the author on-air last night.

Winfrey told the CNN anchor, "Although some of the facts have been questioned... that underlying message of the redemption of James Frey still resonates with me."

Frey's appearance on the show was his first TV interview since the controversy began last week (06JAN06) after the author was accused of making up various police altercations he claims to have had in his book by the Smoking Gun website.

Frey defended his book, which is set mainly during his time in rehab, as "a truthful but subjective recollection of my life".

He told King that his embellishments, which he did not elaborate upon, are far outweighed by the basic truth of his life experiences.