To make light of it, brag about it, or revel in the mock glory of it is not in any way, shape or form related to its truth, and that is all that matters, the truth. That this man is standing in front of me and everyone else in this room lying to us is heresy. The truth is all that matters.

This quotation comes in the middle of the book, after a famous rock star and former addict has just given a speech to the patients. In his speech, the rock star claims that at the depths of his addiction, he did $5,000 worth of heroin and cocaine a day and took up to forty valiums to sleep. These claims enrage James, and he despises the fact that the rock star has embellished his addiction for show. These words take on new meaning in light of Frey’s public outing. Once the story of Frey’s embellishments to the book was public and undeniable, he stuck by the claim of the “essential truth” of the book—meaning that it is acceptable to alter facts as long as the emotional impact of the story is there. In the book, James himself calls self-aggrandizing lies “heresy.”