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Book Review: 'Pay or Play'

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”In a town without taste, there is no such thing as tasteless,” Boorstin writes in this gentle Hollywood satire. A brash young mail clerk in L.A.’s biggest talent agency fishes a brilliant screenplay from the trash and, on the strength of photocopied business cards and an Armani suit bought from profits scalping Oscar tickets, proceeds to hustle its reclusive writer and an action-movie superstar into a big package deal. The full-scale farce that results is surprisingly good-natured, portraying Hollywood as a place where talent can still command attention, luck can throw the game, and good buzz is still tantamount to good taste. A-