Books: Reflections of Another War

ONE VERY HOT DAY by David Halberstam. 216 pages. Houghfon Mifflin. $4.95.

Good or bad, a war novel usually proves that the eye and makeup of the beholder are at least as important as what he has witnessed. Each book is as fresh, or as stale, as the writer's response to his subject.

As a correspondent for the New York Times, David Halberstam won a Pulitzer Prize in 1964 for his reports on war and politics in South Viet Nam during the Diem regime. He is serious, informed, thoughtful and troubled. His novel is not...