Books: Marital Etiquette

MARRIAGE Is A PRIVATE AFFAIR—Judith Kelly—Harper ($2.50).

This, the 1941 Harper Prize ($10,000) novel, is a problem book about marriage among U.S. upper-middle class, eastern-seaboard, Smith-or-Vassar bred, young housewives. It is written in their official dialect, by one of them. For the rest of them, it will probably be the novel of the season.

Theo and Tom West get off to a glowing start. Tom, an architect, is absorbed in a low-cost housing project. Theo bears two children rather sooner than she is spiritually adequate to the job. Their friends are solid-seeming, yet Theo finds infidelities among them, and at length, bored, crib-ridden,...

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