Erica K. Cardozo
November 17, 1995 at 05:00 AM EST

You’d probably think that a book about a gifted child actor who grows up to graduate from Yale, make headlines as the object of John Hinckley Jr.’s obsession in the 1981 assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan, win two Oscars, become a director, and preside over her own production company — all by the time she is 30 — would be difficult to put down. Think again. In his self-important introduction to Jodie: A Biography, Chunovic answers the query ”You gonna stalk her?” — posed to him by acquaintances — with this response: ”I’ve stalked Jodie Foster through computers, card catalogs, and microfiche, basing this story on the voluminous public record of nearly three decades in the public eye.” The thing is, we are the public eye. What we want is an insider’s view. Instead, Chunovic provides us with what amounts to a thorough filmography, a bunch of Foster’s quotes from old interviews, and glimpses of the star (at the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes) safely decked out in her public persona. This is, as the author puts it, ”biography at a distance.” Except for occasional gushing over his subject, it isn’t even a wet kiss. More like a dry peck. C

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