Picks and Pans Review: Dr. Burns' Prescription for Happiness

UPDATED 11/12/1984 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 11/12/1984 at 01:00 AM EST

by George Burns

"Look, when I worked with Gracie, I was retired. I did nothing. We walked on the stage and I said, 'Gracie, how's your brother?' and she talked for 38 years." This is the comedian's fifth book and, like his others, it is made up of recycled stand-up routines. They are still funny. He writes about how, at 79, he became a dramatic actor: "If the director wants me to cry, I think of my sex life. If he wants me to laugh, I think of my sex life. And if he wants me to laugh and cry at the same time, I look in the mirror. Olivier has his system, I have mine." The beginning of each chapter suggests that Burns is going to get down to the happiness formula promised in his title, but then digressions are, in his case, to be expected. Also looked forward to. (Putnam, $11.95)

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