CURTAIN by Michael Korda
Summit; 378 pages; $19.95
This oddly lifeless gossip novel by Michael Korda, a publishing exec whose works include the yuppie missals Success! and Power!, is the sort called a roman a clef by the French and "serving up something for the shopgirls" by the English. There is a patronizing quality to the central notion, which is that the reader is a lowbrow who will have naughty fun -- "coo, oi didn't know that about 'er" -- guessing which real-life celebrities are behaving scandalously behind aliases and sketchy disguises.
Celebrity detection is not difficult here. Felicia Lisle, a...