\\’ ro or 4114,e411013 k$0 10 WS* Let it be said: this book is a disaster /t r. ft A pastiche ‘honoring’ Dallas Dallas Inflation and the declining salmon catch have pushed the price of good Nova Scotia lox to $9.95 a pound. But, happily, nobody eats lox by the pound. A dollar will still buy you enough to overload a bagel. The price per pound of this pastiche in honor of the Big D is even higher but, again, the few good essays floundering in its sea of badly reproduced, clicheridden photographs and high-flown, city-on-the-gro prose weigh only a few ounces. Sadly though, no Dallas book stores are selling The Book of Dallas by the ounce. At least not yet. It may come to that: the binding job is so bad that the book’s glossy pages nearly pop out as you leaf through. Local reviewers have been kind. They sound like fond bachelor uncles critiquing a favorite niece’s pratfalls in a junior high production of The Nutcracker Suite. Mike Carlton complained in The Dallas Times Herald about the book’s banal cover \(a big gold D on an off-white photographs, and an arrival in city stores too late for most of the Christmas trade. But he predicted that the book will sell, even though it’s overpriced and “not as exciting and vibrant as this growing and scintillating city.” Lee Milazzo of The Dallas Morning News called the publication of this miserable tome “a significant book event” is this like a “media event”? and limited the rest of his review to a tactful catalogue of the contents. In The Fort Worth Star-Telegram Leonard Sanders wrote his own Dallas essay: “Dallas is somewhat like an older sister who has developed a disturbing preoccupation with money and appearances, who is given to different and brassy ways, and who is apt to intrude her pushy personality at .the most unexpected and inopportune moments.” He didn’t say how or whether the essays in the book address themselves to the disturbing change in big sister’s character. Erika Sanchez, writing in D Magazine, called the book “a lesson in the vagaries of publishing,” but passed the blame for 18 The Texas Observer a bungled job off onto the folks at Doubleday. In an interview in the Times Herald’s Sunday magazine, photographers Bob Smith and Laura Garza told Peyton Davis that they only got into the project for the money: both were paying for divorces and couldn’t turn down even the hardly munificent $2,000 editor Bill Porterfield offered them to do it. Smith said he and Garza had had no control over the way their photographs were used and had screamed in vain when half their color pictures were converted to black and white. He took some comfort in his suspicion that “most people don’t recognize the difference between really excellent photographic reproduction and good photographic reproduction.” He didn’t say anything about rotten photographic reproduction. So far, nobody connected with The Book of Dallas has excused his role in the disaster by saying, “The Devil made
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