Books: The Beast in the Jungle

THE BAMBOO BED by William Eastlake. 350 pages. Simon & Schuster. $6.50.

William (Castle Keep) Eastlake has visited Southeast Asia twice since 1966, but no one could be less of a war-correspondent novelist. In The Bamboo Bed, he approaches the struggle in Viet Nam not as a three-dimensional event but as the frighteningly abstract piece of surrealism that we all share on the evening news. Black comedy, myth, shaggy parables of the top secrets of the human heart—these are the literary forms war takes for Eastlake.

At the center of Eastlake's brilliantly grotesque fantasy swaggers Captain Clancy. Clancy wears a Roman helmet with...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!