If you're stuck in an armchair, "Hello Goodbye Hello: A Circle of 101 Remarkable Meetings," by Craig Brown, can reproduce the serendipity travelers thrive on. This odd volume, researched and written with breathtaking precision and abundant British wit, recounts a chain of weird encounters among famous people. Frank Lloyd Wright meets Marilyn Monroe. Igor Stravinsky meets Walt Disney. Groucho Marx meets T.S. Eliot. Martha Graham meets Madonna. Oh, and each chapter is 1,001 words. Brown is a British critic, satirist and, it would appear, obsessive. Vanity Fair called the book a "feat of narrative engineering." Info: $26.95, http://www.simonandshuster.com —C.R.
Simon & Schuster