Kitty Kelley is a writer who measures the success of her unauthorized celebrity biographies by the number of death threats she receives from crazy fans of the subjects of said unauthorized celebrity biographies. (By this gauge, Nancy Reagan: The Unauthorized Biography is her most successful book to date.) Kelley's new book is an unauthorized biography of Oprah—and considering the number of glassy-eyed Oprah fans out there, the book should have Kelley drowning in death threats written on Kate's Paperie stationery scented with Jo Malone's Wet Grass fragrance (two of Oprah's Favorite Things™) in no time.
After all, Kelley promises that Oprah is chock-full of mysterious "secrets"—not to be confused with The Secret—about the woman who owns the letter O.
"There are so many secrets in her life," Kelley, 68, said Monday on NBC's Today show. "Secrets about her relationship, secrets within her family."
Ooh. So many secrets! Secrets like, Oprah's cousin really doesn't like Oprah:
She may not have been well off, but Oprah was relatively "spoiled" as a little girl, her cousin said.
"Where Oprah got that nonsense about growing up in filth and roaches I have no idea," said the relative, Katherine Carr Esters. "I've confronted her and asked, 'Why do you tell such lies?' Oprah told me, 'That's what people want to hear. The truth is boring.' "
Explosive! And secrets like: Oprah is asexual and not very good at giving gifts:
At one point, the rumors included seamy talk at ABC about a relationship between Winfrey and Diane Sawyer when Oprah worked there.
Employees there described "giggly late-night phone calls" and a series of lavish gifts from Winfrey — including gigantic sprays of orchids and a 1-carat diamond toe ring — to Sawyer.
Despite such rumors, Kelley concludes Winfrey is "asexual."
And still more secrets, like: Oprah's cardboard cutout of a boyfriend doesn't share her bedroom!
As for Winfrey's very public relationship with Graham, the pair do not even share a bedroom, according to the book.
Salacious! But the biggest secret of all? Oprah's life story is inspiring:
"I can't think of a better life story [than Oprah's]," she says. "You come away being inspired."
So to sum up, Kitty Kelley's "secrets" about Oprah are: Oprah's relatives don't like her; Oprah is asexual; This one time, Oprah gave Diane Sawyer a diamond toe ring; Oprah's sham relationship with Steadman is in fact a sham relationship; and Oprah is inspiring.
Clearly, Kitty Kelley is saving all the good secrets about Oprah for her follow-up unauthorized biography, O2. Here are a couple "secrets" about Oprah to get Kelley started:
—Oprah's real name is Oprah
—Oprah hosts a popular daytime talk show
—Oprah was once a human child
—Oprah's cousin says that, growing up, Oprah always acted like her popsicle stick houses were "so great."
—Oprah likes soap that isn't shaped like soap
—Oprah is mean to some people sometimes, and nice to some people sometimes
—Oprah has seizures whenever she steps into a Restoration Hardware
—Once, Oprah gave Barbara Walters a cashmere throw that Oprah described as "puce," but that was totally "russet."