Speaking of Books
Lost in America,
Albert Brooks, 63, pens a novel of generational warfare
and someone hates me.
Q: In the novel Matthew
Bernstein, our 47th president, fears his legacy will
be “the first divorced half-Jew president who sold
America’s biggest city to
China.” Is it a leap to think
you might play him in the
movie version of 2030?
A: For the kind of movies
I make, the budgets I get are
low. There’s no way I could
tell this story [on film]. I
couldn’t cut to China, cut
to America, film a 9. 1 earthquake that levels L.A. To
make this movie correctly
would cost $150 million.
Q: So a book’s easier to
write than a screenplay?
A: Writing 2030 was the most liberating creative experience I’ve ever had.
As the characters developed, some of
the things I originally thought they
might do just didn’t pan out. That’s the
coolest thing in the world; it’s at the
heart of creation. It’s like you’re honing
these chess pieces, and then they start
to move on their own. —Allan Fallow
OF MY YOUTH
BY MARY GORDON
Two American travel-
ers, Miranda and
Adam, briefly reunite
in Rome 36 years after
their painful breakup. Their visits to
the city’s iconic monuments trigger
dorm-style discussions of truth,
beauty, regret, and gelato. But the tru-
ly compelling bits are the flashbacks
to the couple’s youthful betrayals.
ABOU T THE GAMES
BY BILL WHITE
Recalling three dec-
ades as an All-Star
first baseman, a broadcaster, and
National League president, White
revisits his battles against racism
on the field and in the front office.
Amid insider gossip aplenty, White
concedes he “didn’t love baseball.”
Q: 2030:TheRealStoryof What
HappenstoAmericais deadly serious.
A: I try to pepper everything I do with
humor, but the future doesn’t look so
funny to me. (Laughs.)
Q: That explains a plot in which
youthful “resentment gangs” shoot
up busloads of “olds,” hijack a retirement ship, and bomb AARP HQ.
A: Being part of a large group of people
historically accused of taking, I can see
how newer generations would be
resentful. How would you feel if you
were 30 and saw 8,000 people a day
entering into Social Security? You’d
say, “Get the f*** off the planet!”
Q: That bad, huh?
A: Well, let’s just say I’m sensitive to
these things—hey, that’s my job! I
can tell when I go into a supermarket
ADAM HOME: THE
BY LES STANDIFORD
WITH DETECTIVE SERGEANT JOE MATTHEWS
The 1981 murder of six-year-old Adam
Walsh put a moat around American
childhood and turned his father, John,
into a national champion for child protection. How Adam’s killer was identified in 2008 makes gripping reading.
A Covert Affair: The Adventures of Julia Child and Paul
Child in the OSS BY JENNET CONAN T. As an operative in the
World War II precursor to the CIA, 6-foot-2-inch socialite Julia
Mc Williams—the future grande dame of coq au vin—found
herself evading Japanese submarines, battling “Delhi belly,” and
falling in love with fellow OSS agent Paul Child. Back home, the
couple got snared in a web of Red-scare lies—and Soviet spies. ;
TOP LEFT: GREGG SEGAL/CORBIS OUTLINE