Books: Sermon Thriller

LUCKYPENNY— Bruce Marshall — Dutton ($2.50).

Religious and mystical novelists were once able to frighten sinners by giving terrifying descriptions of Hell. Nowadays, they make the world sound as bad as Hell once did. In Luckypenny, Bruce Marshall (Father Malachy's Miracle) demonstrates this development with a sermon thriller hinging on three themes : 1) that "rich men have been too selfish," which in turn makes the poor "unable to govern their greed," 2) that "mechanical invention has progressed out of all ratio to spiritual perfection," 3) that "men no longer believe in God."

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