Pigeon in a Crosswalk: Tales of Anxiety and Accidental Glamour

Jack Gray, Author
Jack Gray. Simon & Schuster, $22 (224p) ISBN 978-1-4516-4134-9
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This collection of Gray’s smalltown dreams and big-city ambitions has all of the shy charm of a favorite relative chatting to family over stiff drinks, embarrassingly revealing yet somehow addictive. Gray, an Emmy Award–winning producer for CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360, pokes fun at himself as a kid filming a fake TV show with his sister with a VHS camcorder in suburban Boston. After a newscast producer’s gig on a local TV program, he is offered a producing post by conservative firebrand Glenn Beck, but chooses a more desirable position with CNN host Cooper. There are flashes of real wit and campy fun as with this sleepover in Cooper’s summer home: “It involved Kathy [Griffith] trying on Anderson’s boxer shorts, me passing out on the sofa after too much sake with Kelly Ripa, and Anderson, just sitting there, the whole weekend, giggling.” If you hope this book will reveal the dirt on Mr. Cooper or other celebrities, you’ll be disappointed. With humor and heart, Gray uses his recollections as a sentimental, sassy mirror into his own personal and professional affairs. (Feb.)
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