cover image The Complete Lyrics of Irving Berlin

The Complete Lyrics of Irving Berlin

Irving Berlin. Knopf Publishing Group, $65 (560pp) ISBN 978-0-679-41943-3

With ""God Bless America"" sung at every public event and Irving Berlin's name on the lips of every network anchor (Berlin wrote the anthem in 1938) there's bound to be new interest in The Complete Works of Irving Berlin. Editors Robert Kimball and Linda Emmet focus on Berlin's lyrics, of course, but also provide brief biographical vignettes in this oversized compendium. That the master of American music wrote alternative, humorous verses to what's now his most famous song (""God bless America/ Land I enjoy/ No discussions with the Russians/ Till they stop sending arms to Hanoi"") is just one of the small but fascinating revelations. Illus. (Nov.)