Books: A Power of Talk

THE OLD MAN'S BOY GROWS OLDER (302 pp.)—Robert Ruark—Holt, Rme-hart & Winston ($4.95).

A first-class barroom talker, which Robert Ruark is, needs a knockabout past, a creative memory, sufficient humor to see the vanity of his inventions, and a delivery good enough to shield from his listeners the gravy stains on material, memory and wit. With this equipment, a talker who happens to be, say, a journalist, can Jang out a newspaper column for years in an average daily elapsed time of eleven minutes (so Newspaperman Ruark has coasted; one suspects the creative memory is an aid in recounting the feat). Or...

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