After tactfully distancing himself from the movie version of Bonfire of the Vanities, author Tom Wolfe predicted ”a lot of discussion in the ’90s about morality.” He was right, but the nattily dressed and once-prolific scribe, now 66, has largely stayed out of it. He began his second novel right after Bonfire, and a decade later, he’s still applying the finishing touches. Fans can expect this book — ”on the same scale as Bonfire,” sometime next year, promises Jonathan Galassi, Wolfe’s editor at Farrar, Straus & Giroux. ”That work anatomized what was going on in a metropolis, and this book is about America in a broader sense.” Details? It’s set in Atlanta, features an aging real estate tycoon, and explores ”what it means to be a man.” Wolfe teased readers early this year with ”Ambush at Fort Bragg,” a Rolling Stone serial satirizing TV news (just released by Bantam Doubleday Dell in audio book form, with Primal Fear’s Edward Norton narrating). ”Ambush” was going to be in the new book, Galassi notes, but it became an outtake.
Posted October 17 1997 — 12:00 AM EDT
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