‘Gossip Girl’ Gets an Actual New Yorker!Well, hello, Upper East Siders. It seems like Gossip Girl will be getting a real-live New Yorker this season. Brooklyn-born Michelle Trachtenberg has taken on the Gossip Girl role that Mischa Barton so unwisely passed over: that of Georgina Sparks, the bad girl “who rolls into Manhattan from rehab, shaking up and torturing the life of Serena van der Woodsen.” Trachtenberg has been working since practically the day she popped out of the womb: She’s been in everything from Clarissa Explains It All to Six Feet Under, but we (as well as probably the entire staff at Knopf) remember her as the girl who shook up and tortured Ann Packer’s The Dive From Clausen’s Pier when she played the main character in the Lifetime movie last year. But somehow, we’re looking forward to seeing her again, partly because a tortured Serena has got to be a more interesting Serena. Bring on the peer pressure!
Trachtenberg to Appear on Gossip [HR]
‘New England White’: Mystery Plus the Kitchen SinkLike his 2002 smash The Emperor of Ocean Park, Stephen L. Carter’s New England White is a mystery plus. A mystery plus domestic melodrama. A mystery plus social satire. A mystery plus an examination of the black upper crust. Carter, also a law professor at Yale, borrows from the murder and legal-thriller genres, throws in a governmental conspiracy, and even (as the title hints) takes a few more literary cues from Hawthorne and his New England brethren. Some critics feel the result is a little too much; others think it’s just right.