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Revised versions

Three witty new books spoof usually serious subjects.

The Meowmorphosis (Quirk Classics) by Franz Kafka and Cook Coleridge is a revamping of the surreal novel in which Gregor Samsa awakes not as a giant insect but as a giant adorable kitten.

That Is Priceless: Art's Great Masterpieces . . . Made Slightly Funnier (Andrews McMeel) by Steve Melcher assigns irreverently apt captions to great paintings, so Renoir's Luncheon of the Boating Party becomes Lunch Break at Kid Rock Look-Alike Contest.

Write More Good: An Absolutely Phony Guide (Three Rivers) by the Bureau Chiefs is a pitch-perfect, profane parody of a newspaper style guide, with grammar and usage guidelines, journalism tips (such as how to translate political speeches or interview people who see UFOs) and definitions: "Deadline: Something reporters say they're on so they don't have to talk to you on the phone."

Colette Bancroft, Times book editor

Notable: Revised versions 05/14/11 [Last modified: Saturday, May 14, 2011 4:30am]
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