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Gawker recently published an excerpt of an interview by Oprah’s first cousin Jo Baldwin, who’s story appears in the new paper back book ‘Oprah: A Biography‘, revealing some bombshell revelations about Oprah’s personal life.

In the interview Baldwin reveals that when she graduated from college, Oprah hired her as a speechwriter, only to fire her unexpectedly two years into her three year contract. Baldwin claims that she was fired for talking about her faith in Jesus to much, as Oprah herself prefers the teachings of Shirley MacLaine. She goes on to note that not even Oprah’s own mother has her cell phone number, and needs to contact her producers if she wishes to speak to her daughter, as Oprah prefers the company of her high-powered celebrity friends.

Baldwin claims that the Winfrey family is ‘tangled with so many secrets and so much fear…I admit I was afraid of Oprah for 20 years. Absolutely terrified. She’s powerful and dangerous. She told me if I ever opened my mouth [about what I know] she’d sue my pants off.’ But she then notes that the family still hang around for the lavish gifts and checks that Oprah has been known to bestow upon the family.

Hmmm… I don’t know whether I believe it or not, but one thing I do know is that if my family were only hanging around for money and gifts, I probably wouldn’t associate with them either.

The biography by Kitty Kelley is available now.

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