Fools’ Names, Fools’ Faces

What do Bill Bennett and James Carville, Louis Farrakhan and Gennifer Flowers, Don Imus and Bill Moyers have in common? They all wish Andrew Ferguson had never heard of them. For ten years, Ferguson has prowled the fever swamps of American celebrity in search of frauds and mountebanks, and he has not been disappointed. This is “celebrity journalism” of an unusually high – and skewed and entertaining – order.

But Ferguson also takes his readers beyond mere celebrity to examine the larger social trends and enthusiasms of this hyper-accelerated age. In Fools’ Names, Fools’ Faces, his first collection of essays, he dissects (and sometimes becomes a reluctant participant in) the quintessentially American fads that the ’90s have forced upon us.