Books: The Counterfeiters

THE RECOGNITIONS (956 pp.)—William Gaddis—Harcourf, Brace ($7.50).

It is almost impossible to ignore a novelist who produces 956 closely printed pages. William Gaddis, a 33-year-old New Yorker who has never published a book before, rates attention for other reasons as well. He has written this novel from that dark night of the soul where, as F. Scott Fitzgerald once said, "it is always three o'clock in the morning." To the small army of "beat generation" characters in The Recognitions, dawn never comes.

As Author Gaddis sees it, the 20th century U.S. is a soggy butt...

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