Venerable publishing house Simon & Schuster is getting heaps of publicity for two of its pending book releases. The first, O: A Presidential Novel (out January 25), sounds absolutely ridiculous, a semi-fictionalized (or not) account of the Obama White House and set during the 2012 elections. In the book, Obama, or his fictional proxy, is (judging by the excerpts) only referred to as O, a bizarre choice to say the least. Why not just say "Oflama" or "Omaba"? Too much typing maybe. Or! Is there a literary method to this madness? Also on the S&S docket is My Infamous Life: The Autobiography of Mobb Deep's Prodigy (April 19), co-authored with longtime music writer Laura Checkoway, in which Prodigy will presumably refer to himself exclusively as P, with a cornucopia of modifiers. With the yeoman's work of P's own book handled by Checkoway, he could've easily written O in his down time, which would explain the single-letter character choice, right? Is this Simon & Schuster biting Sue Grafton's swag or did P write O???*
*We should probably read one or both of these books before publishing this.