George W. Bush, Janet Fitch, and Julie Andrews made book news this week

By EW Staff
May 21, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT
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Beating around the Bush
Texas columnist Molly Ivins has signed with Random House to write Shrub, a book about her home-state governor — and likely presidential contender — George W. Bush. But she isn’t promising any juicy revelations. ”I don’t do sex or psychology,” Ivins says, adding that there are ”three rules for figuring out what a candidate for public office will do. The first is, look at the record. The second is, look at the record. The third is, look at the record.” Shrub — Ivins’ jokey nickname for the younger Bush — will be out next January.

White hot
Things could not be going better for Janet Fitch, whose first novel, White Oleander, was this month’s Oprah Book Club pick. (Since it has just been published, Oleander is available only in hardcover, which means Fitch will be collecting royalties at a much higher rate than she would for a paperback.) According to Renaissance agent/president Joel Gotler, who brokered the deal, Warner Brothers just shelled out $1 million for the film rights, to be developed by ER exec producer John Wells. And that’s not all: Winfrey liked the book so much that she asked Fitch’s publisher, Little, Brown, if she could record the audio version, which is now due in stores at the end of the month.

Oh, Mandy
By now, two generations of kids have lapped up Julie Andrews’ much-lauded children’s books, Mandy and The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles. Now the star, who writes under the name Julie Edwards, has made a rumored low-seven-figure deal with Hyperion to pen another children’s book, Little Bo, along with her autobiography. The memoir is tentatively scheduled for spring 2001; Bo arrives in stores next fall.

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