Books: Quality in Quantity

NEW AMERICAN REVIEW: NUMBER 1. 288 pages. New American Library. 95¢ (Limited hard-cover edition: $5.)

In the '50s, drugstore racks blossomed with a literary phenomenon: paperback-book magazines—a lively blend of avant-garde fiction and nonfiction, poetry and criticism. In effect, the p.b.m. was a mass-distributed little magazine, a brave effort to sell quality in quantity. Commercially, it soon flopped.

Now the New American Library, which published New World Writing in that era, has revived the paperback-book magazine as a triannual bloom. If the first issue of New American Review is any indication, it is well...

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