The inside scoop on the book world

By Matthew Flamm
Updated October 18, 2002 at 04:00 AM EDT

— THE REAL STORY Michael Chabon’s novel The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay told part of the story of the golden age of comics, but now former comic-book writer Gerard Jones will give Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, as well as other comics greats, the nonfiction treatment. ”It’s about all these guys who created the comic books out of their own yearnings — almost all of them Jewish and creating characters who were the antithesis of the ghetto-Jewish person of that time,” says Jo Ann Miller, exec editor at Basic Books, which will publish Men of Tomorrow in ’04. She adds that Chabon himself helped Jones come up with the idea for the book.

— MURDER, HE WROTE Hoping to turn out a true-crime hit like Mark Fuhrman’s Murder in Greenwich, the book that helped reopen the Martha Moxley homicide case, CBS news producer Casey Sherman is writing A Rose for Mary: The Hunt for the Real Boston Strangler. Sherman — the nephew of Mary Sullivan, the Strangler’s last victim — led the efforts to have both his aunt’s and confessed Strangler Albert DeSalvo’s bodies exhumed for testing, which ultimately showed no DNA evidence linking DeSalvo to the 1964 crime. Sherman adds that DNA testing was performed on the ”real” Strangler, and ”the results and how that evidence was obtained will be revealed in the book,” which will be published by Northeastern University Press.

— BAND AIDS Wilco may be an alternative rock band, but they’re enjoying mainstream-size exposure: The group has a hot disc, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, in stores and a documentary about them, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, in theaters. Now, they are the subject of a book, Wilco: Learning How to Die, which will be written by music critic Greg Kot, with the cooperation of lead singer Jeff Tweedy. ”It’s a larger consideration of what [it takes to] create quality popular music…and get it listened to,” says exec editor-at-large Gerry Howard of Doubleday Broadway, which will publish the book in ’04.