Washington Schlepped Here, by Christopher Buckley. (Crown, 112 pages, $16)
This is the most recent "Crown Journey" -- little commissioned literary travel books. Declaring from the outset that he is no historian, Buckley lards and bastes his book with bits of fanciful almost-history: Congress ruled that the capital was to be in Princeton, but the pols were rejected when they insisted on being admitted to the "elite eating clubs." But mainly it is a punctilious relating of well-borrowed facts, observations -- delivered with gracious attributions, especially to well-established Washington walking-tour guides and talking sources. The little book is divided into four "walking tours" -- which could, indeed, be followed as actual promenades. But 'tis a far, far finer thing to sit in a comfortable chair in an air-conditioned room and read the whole thing to the accompaniment of a great deal of laughter.