Books: Cassette Guys Tokyo Woes

by Bruce Jay Friedman Fine; 187 pages; $14.95

You might think that a guy who hadn't published a novel in eleven years would show a few signs of nervousness, make a false move here and there, when he gave it another try. But Bruce Jay Friedman, who was almost certainly, pound for pound, the peppiest black humorist of the whole 1960s (Remember Stern ? A Mother's Kisses ?), hasn't exactly been idle during his long layoff. He wrote The Lonely Guy's Book of Life, which not only advised single fellas how to cope but became a motion picture vehicle for Steve Martin. He did the screenplay for Stir Crazy...

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