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Book Review: 'A Place to Fall'

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A Place to Fall

Current Status:
In Season
Roger Director

We gave it a B

As a former producer for Moonlighting and writer on Hill Street Blues, Roger Director lampoons Hollywood with an insider’s savvy and cynicism in A Place to Fall. After a mere six months in L.A., narrator Billy Ziff has been transformed from a happily married literary type into a perpetually blocked, ulcerous writer on a TV detective show. Then he concocts Father Joey, a series about a street-smart, boozy priest who grants the wishes of the terminally ill. When it becomes a phenomenal hit (the Smithsonian requests Father Joey’s collar), Billy must face the monster he created: the show’s star, an unknown turned egomaniac, whom Billy suspects is sleeping with his wife. Despite Director’s comical, lively writing (tense Billy feels ”contorted into a fusilli”), the furiously satirical pitch drowns out any reverberations more subtle than this familiar message: Hollywood rots the soul. B