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Between the Lines

The inside scoop on the book world

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— EERIE NEWS Twilight Zone junkies can soon get a book-length fix of the classic sci-fi series: ibooks has just made a deal (which coincides with the new Twilight Zone series currently on UPN) to extend the franchise with three original novels. Byron Preiss, ibooks’ publisher, points out that while there have been short-story collections, ”nobody has ever attempted to do something novel-length” with the show. The first in the trilogy, titled simply The Twilight Zone, by John J. Miller, is due out in May and will follow the show’s traditional formula of taking ”a slight disturbance in reality and exaggerating it to its natural extreme,” says Preiss.

— BRONTE SISTER (IN SPIRIT) It’s never too late for a comeback: Viking plans to publish a new novel by Charlotte Bronte early next year. Well, actually, Irish novelist Clare Boylan has taken an 18-page fragment of a novel that Bronte wrote shortly before her death and turned it into a finished novel called Emma Brown. According to Pamela Dorman, the Viking executive editor who acquired it, you ”can’t tell where [Bronte] ended and [Boylan] began. It’s a delicious, curl-up-in-bed, 19th-century novel.”

— THE HISTORY OF MEL The 2,000 Year Old Man shows no signs of slowing down: Mel Brooks has just signed with HarperEntertainment to write what the publisher is calling ”an anecdotal memoir” about his five decades in show business — from Your Show of Shows through Blazing Saddles to the Broadway incarnation of The Producers. ”You have to jump on an opportunity to publish a comedy genius like this,” says exec editor Mauro DiPreta. The irrepressible comic had this to say about the book deal: ”I have always been a huge admirer of my own work. I’m one of the funniest and most entertaining writers I know. And I just can’t wait to read my book.” He’ll have to wait only until next year.