Here's how I got it to working.
I renamed my "iPhoto Library" (in user, Pictures, ) to "iPhoto Library Test".
I threw away my preferences (in user, Library, Preferences -"com.apple.iPhoto.plist").
I then started iPhoto and it loaded without crashing, but with a empty Photo Library.
I remembered that on the last import that I performed, I rotated the picture and then iPhoto crashed never to load again without crashing.
I then quit iPhoto.
In the folder - user, Pictures, iPhoto Library, Albums - there is a file called "Pending Rotation". I copied this file from my new blank iPhoto Library and pasted it in user, Pictures, iPhoto Library Test, Albums - to replace the one already there.
I then renamed the new "iPhoto Library" to "iPhoto Library Old". I then renamed "iPhoto Library Test" to just "iPhoto library".
When I restarted iPhoto, it loaded up OK ( reading the "Pending Rotation" from the one I had just copied to my Albums folder) and loaded my original photo library and worked without crashing.
I then put the "iPhoto Library Old" in the trash.
I assume that when it crashed trying to rotate the picture, it corrupted the "Pending Rotation" file. There is also a file in the Albums folder called "Last Import" that you might have to replace if you last import got corrupted.