James Frey targets a million little readers
Controversial writer James Frey has been outed as the co-author of a hot new children's book, as yet unpublished. But why all the mystery?
As ever with Frey, who was found to have fabricated parts of his autobiography, A Million Little Pieces, there are layers within layers to this latest book deal. Last week it emerged in the New York Times that a young adult novel was being hawked to publishers as a collaboration between a bestselling writer and an emerging new author. The book, called I Am Number Four, is about a group of alien teenagers who take refuge on Earth when their planet is attacked.
The New York Times outed Frey as the author, and yesterday reported that HarperCollins Children's Books had acquired North American rights in the first four books in what is being billed as a series, starting with I Am Number Four.
Film rights have also been acquired by Dreamworks for a high six-figure sum, added the Hollywood Reporter, with Michael Bay (director of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen) lined up to produce and possibly direct.
As yet Frey himself has not commented on the deal, telling website Gawker – where he interned for a day – that he could "neither confirm nor deny that I had anything to do with that book". However, he has posted a link to the New York Times piece revealing him as the author on his official website, also linking to a story revealing more of the plot details. The evil aliens are from the planet Mogadore, who destroyed the planet Lorien in order to take its natural resources; they follow the planet's teenagers, who develop special powers aged 15, to Earth to complete the job.