Books: Indirect Nightmare

The Moon's No Fool—Thomas Matthews—Random House ($2).

When a writer's imagination is as great as moral indignation, he is likely to produce a fantasy. In an environment of pure invention, heroes are twice as heroic. villains twice as villainous and life's follies doubly absurd. Toward the petard of such celebrated masters of adult make-believe as Jonathan Swift and Samuel Butler. Thomas Stanley Matthews has hoisted himself with a nightmare called The Moon's No Fool.

An extraordinary piece of writing, The Moon's No Fool is a bold, imaginative flight, but one that seems headed in all directions at...

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