Books: Writer Wrong

AN ANSWER FROM LIMBO (322 pp.) —Brian Moore—Atlantic-Little, Brown ($5).

To hear the writers tell it. all writers have bad characters, if indeed they have any character at all. Matricides may be dealt with kindly in novels, an author may find a spark of good in a drug-addicted card cheat or a grasping banker, and it is an immutable law that prostitutes' hearts are warm. But let a novelist introduce a wretch whose vice is writing novels, and there begins a recital of character faults that would have horrified Caligula: the fellow is meanspirited,...

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