Books: Mixed Fiction

MAN'S DESIRING, by Menno Gallie (192 pp.; Harper; $3.50) is a sort of border ballad about the frontier between England and Wales. Few Americans think of that line as much of a barrier, but to Griff Rowlands, a hymn-singing Welshman from a valley full of coal tips and chapels, it is booby-trapped with social snares and moral menace. At 24, he gets an appointment as assistant lecturer in mathematics at one of the new raw "red brick" universities in the English provinces. Starting writh this subject matter, Menna Gallie's brisk, garrulous and altogether charming novel serves to trace a few...

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