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IN BRIEF

Nonfiction

July 04, 1993|KAREN STABINER

HILARY by Norman King (Birch Lane Press: $19.95; 211 pp.). From Oprah to Arsenio Hall, from Madonna to Donahue, Dan Rather and Ivana: now, international investment banker, lecturer and celebrity biographer Norman King brings you Hilary Clinton, the compilation. The book jacket tells us that King has a "fascination with celebrities and the business of show business," a good hint about what readers will find between these lavender covers--every tidbit you might have wanted to know, or had already read somewhere else, placed neatly in order and dished up as biography. The book fails to mention whether King has actually ever interviewed the First Lady, though it would be nice to know where the anecdotes, particularly about her early life, came from? Did she "pause" as she recollected her choice of Wellesley over Smith, in a conversation with the author? With a friend, who recounted it to the author? Or in some profile that served as part of King's research? But maybe I'm taking this all too seriously. Maybe what the world really wants to hear about, over and over again, is the headbands and the haircuts and the way she dressed in college. We seem to have an endless ability to diminish people, to turn them into a catalogue of superficialities; Hillary Clinton deserves (and, given our fascination with her, will undoubtedly get) better than this.

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