Books: Little Masterpiece

CONJUGAL LOVE (183 pp.) —Alberto Moravia—Farrar, Straus ($2.50).

Few living writers handle the theme of love as well as Italian Novelist Alberto Moravia, who has won himself a U.S. reputation for The Woman of Rome, a harsh study of a prostitute, and Two Adolescents, a pair of dryly brilliant stories of puberty. Moravia's new book, a story of the ecstasies and cruelties of married love is his best yet.

The theme is simple: the corruption of love by vanity. Moravia's plot comes to little more than the old one of the husband who nearly loses...

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