Books: Comic Opera (Act VI)

THE KINDLY ONES (254 pp.)—Anfhony Powell—Little, Brown ($4).

The kindly ones were the harbingers of all the gross Furies of history that were to despoil two generations of British youth. This, the sixth in Anthony Powell's great series of novels, called The Music of Time, carries Narrator Nicholas Jenkins back to the outbreak of World War I and forward to the beginnings of World War II.

In the opening flashback to the eve of World War I, Nick Jenkins is a small boy living in his father's country house at Stonehurst. The servants and the...

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