Books: Love & Death

AFTERMATH—Jules Remains—Knopf ($2.75).

Verdun, the eighth and climactic volume of Jules Romains' vast Men of Good Will (TIME, Jan. 8, 1940), was pure holocaust on the heroic scale. It was his attempt to show a nation, a continent, an age in the paroxysm of war. It was the heaviest piece of orchestration Romains' gigantic project had yet demanded of him.

Aftermath is the hour of silence after shock, still resonant with annihilation. In it Verdun's great orchestra is reduced, and human life withdrawn to its deepest, simplest roots. Book 17, Vorge Against Quinette (first half of Aftermath) is a cruel and sinuous piece...

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