cover image Elvis World

Elvis World

Jane Stern. Alfred A. Knopf, $35 (196pp) ISBN 978-0-394-55619-2

The husband-and-wife authors (Real American Food, etc.) here enthusiastically examine the Presley phenomenon. This album, with more than 250 color and black-and-white pictures, to be published on the 10th anniversary of Presley's death, presents the screaming teenage fans, the pink Cadillac, the fluff movies, song lyrics, the ""audacious'' Graceland, wife Priscilla beneath a towering hairdo and, of course, Presley in all his mutationsfrom the 1950s youth with insolent sneer, sideburns and swiveling hips to the 1970s overweight, gaudy jumpsuit-clad ``Monty Hall and Jesus rolled into one.'' Maintaining that he was a self-created people's hero, the Sterns examine the paradox of the ``sex symbol who acted like a choirboy''; his demise in the ``issue-oriented'' 1960s and rebirth in 1968; his staggering appetite, extravagance and generosity; and apotheosis by fans. This fast-paced, frothy entertainment will gladden the hearts of ``true believers.'' 75,000 first printing; BOMC dividend, QPBC and Movie Entertainment Book Club selections. (August 16)