Books: Cardinal's Novel

THE FOUNDLING (304 pp.) — Francis Cardinal Spellman—Scribner ($2.75).

Nobody expects a cardinal to be able to write a great novel, and The Foundling leaves that solid assumption undisturbed. The foundling of Cardinal Spellman's story turns up in Manhattan's St. Patrick's Cathedral shortly after World War I. The finder is a disfigured, heartsick war veteran named Paul Taggart. He wants to adopt the infant boy, but the boy has been born to a Roman Catholic mother and Taggart is a Protestant. Taggart settles for a lifetime devotion to the youngster, beginning with visits to see him in a Catholic orphanage. The boy...

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