Books: Minor Major

A PASSION IN ROME (352 pp.)—Morley Callaghan—Coward-McCann ($4.95).

In the lexicon of the dust jacket, writers do not write novels any more; they write major novels. The phrase, once the reviewer's last cymbal crash before his closing chord of adjectives, has become a generic tag, like "short story" and "hot dog." Thus cold frankfurters are cold hot dogs, not cold dogs. Accepting the publishers' ploy, critics must now confront a new literary phenomenon: the insignificant major novel.

The most recent book to attain its majority before it left the publisher's delivery room is A Passion...

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