Books: Stink or Swim

SOVIET RIVER—Leonid Leonov—Dial ($2.50).

Acclaimed by that old literary war horse Maxim Gorky as a worthy successor to Turgenev, Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky, Author Leonov has at least the distinction of writing a contemporary Russian novel practically propaganda-less. To the benefits of Soviet industrialization he does not point so much as to its all-too-human obstacles and overwhelming material work. Yet it is still clear that in Russia one must swim with the Soviet river, or be left to rot along its banks.

Into the forest wilderness, where the...

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