Books: Childe Rosie in Italy

A FEW FLOWERS FOR SHINER (372 pp.) —Richard Llewellyn—Macmillan ($3).

"Writing is easy," Welsh Novelist Richard Llewellyn once said. "You just go home and roll up your sleeves and it comes." This method, which might only bring gooseflesh to the ordinary arm, has produced a rash of virulently contagious novels from Llewellyn's. He first broke out in 1940 with How Green Was My Valley, which spread to over 700,000 customers and also flared up in a Hollywood movie. While the fever raged, many readers and a few critics raved that it was a great novel....