Barbara Walters Audio Book Cuts Out all the Steamy Parts

Posted on June 23, 2008

The audiobook version of Barbara Walters' bestselling memoir is missing all the naughty parts. That's right, La Walters has banned all the sex scenes from the audio version of the book.

Walters' mid-career love life is detailed largely in two chapters in the middle of the book, "Fun and Games in Washington" and "Special Men in My Life." Not all that special, or all that fun, apparently, because the audio book skips the two chapters entirely. Missing is any note of her affair with Brooke, not to mention her flings with future Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, Virginia Senator John Warner and several more.

A consumer might be excused for feeling victimized by the old bait and switch, since promotional material for the book hints broadly at the romantic revelations ("Here, too, are her relationships with men - in and out of her marriages - and with her friends, co-workers and rivals," reads the Alfred A. Knopf catalog copy); the Brooke affair was the chief headline of virtually every gossip column item on the book; and Walters herself talked about it freely on shows like Oprah.

A call to Random House Audio elicited the usual reminder that abridgements must, of necessity, leave out a lot of material, and a polite passing of the buck to the author. "We had a limited time for the audio, and Barbara was instrumental in choosing what was kept in," said the spokesperson. "She had final approval over everything, and that was the version she wanted to record."

Oh, please. Barbara read her audiobook herself, and clearly she didn't want snippets of her talking about her sex life all over the Internets. But wait...didn't she talk about her sex life all over the morning talk shows? Now, we're really puzzled. The audio book of Audition is in bookstores now.

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