Books: Member of the Funeral

TEN NORTH FREDERICK (408 PP) -John O'Hara -Random House ($3.95).

John O'Hara is a skilled writer who hates small towns and (intellectually speaking) has small chance of ever leaving one. The one he has chosen to hate and not permit his readers to leave is a place called Gibbsville, Pa. (he was born in Pottsville, Pa.). The same people are present in this Zenith-on-the-Schuylkill as lived when Julian English made his famous Appointment in Samarra. Old Dr. English is older and discouraged, but Novelist O'Hara, though older (50), is not discouraged.

His new novel is well organized. It begins with an important corpse,...

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