In “Bartleby and Me,” Gay Talese Recalls Ink-Stained Colleagues and Shares Trade Secrets

From a New York Times book review by Alexandra Jacobs headlined “The Man Who Wrote Everything”:

Gay Talese has a tic. I want to get this out of the way because in general I have such tremendous admiration for the man: that debonair eminence of ye olde New Journalism who is both a living landmark of Manhattan and his own best character.

It’s a writerly tic, the retro habit of referring to women by the color of their hair, but as noun rather than adjective. “A slender and attractive brunette.” “A slender and stylish honey blonde in a ponytail.” “A gregarious young brunette.” “A perky and heavily perfumed brunette in a red cocktail dress.”