Books: That Lonesome Road

THE WORKS OF LOVE (269 pp.)—Wright Morris—Knopf ($3).

Thirty years ago, Sherwood Anderson was writing stories about small-towners who could never decide what they wanted to be. His masterpiece, The Triumph of the Egg, was a grotesque fable in which a farmer, dreaming of becoming a poultry king, wound up defeated, broke and lonely.

Nebraska-born Wright Morris does more than dedicate his new novel to Sherwood Anderson: in an almost filial gesture, he consciously patterns his story on Anderson's work. The locale of The Works of Love is Anderson's sleepy Midwest of the 1900s. Its style is an echo of Anderson's tone of...

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