Books: Critic's Novel

MR. BELUNCLE (310 pp.)—V. S. Pritchett—Harcourt, Brace ($3.50).

Victor Sawdon Pritchett lives in a cottage in the English countryside and, week in and out, writes (for the New Statesman and Nation) the best literary criticism in Britain today. But Critic Pritchett has an itch, and a talent, to do more. When he has time, which is not too often, he writes fiction. At its best, as in his book of stories, It May Never Happen (1947), this fiction shows marvelous quiet skill at catching the character of well-meaning failures.

Author Pritchett's new novel, Mr. Beluncle, is in his best short-story grain. He has...

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