Although it may sound like the title of a Woody Allen movie, "I'll Take Manhattan" is pure Judith Krantz ("creme de la Krantz" if you listen to her publicity machine), the fourth novel by the popular author of "Princess Daisy" and "Scruples."
With its arrival on the book stands comes the announcement that the novel will be transformed into a television miniseries. That should tell you something. Much like the creators of "Dynasty" or "Dallas," Judith Krantz (the Aaron Spelling of literature?) asks her readers to leave reality behind in order to follow her tale of characters who live on trust funds and breathe the rarefied air of Manhattan penthouses. New York real estate kingpin Donald Trump even makes a cameo appearance, which should make for interesting casting when the book hits the TV screen.
Krantz has chosen the glitzy side of magazine publishing as the setting for her story, a world in which the author herself once toiled, and she fills her tale with the back-room workings of everything from photo shoots to page layouts and expense account lunches.
When the miniseries comes around, the biggest part to cast will be that of the beautiful, thrice-married young heroine Maxi Amberville, whose life until now has been "dedicated to extracting the greatest amount of fun that could still be found on the planet earth." But all that changes when her father Zachary, founder of Amberville Publications, a magazine empire on par with Time-Life, expires suddenly and under mysterious circumstances, and Maxi's mother, Lilly, marries Cutter, Zachary's no-good brother (another juicy part). Cutter--"a man who wore invisible bitterness as permanently as if it had been tattooed on his forehead"--wants to sell the company in order to erase Zachary's memory once and for all. With the future of the company at stake, Maxi decides to take over the family's moribund trade publication, "Buttons and Bows," and turn it into a woman's magazine that will take publishing circles by storm.