Books: Musical Chairs

THE VALLEY OF BONES by Anthony Powell. 242 pages. Little, Brown. $4.50.

To pick up one of Anthony Powell's novels at random is as bewildering an experience as walking into a theater halfway through Henry IV, Part II. Who is Hugo Warminster? Why does Dicky Unfraville despise Buster Foxe? What ever became of Eleanor Walpole-Wilson and her Lesbian roommate?

Powell's cool, elegantly witty books in fact are not so much self-contained novels as chapters in a projected, twelve-part series that he calls The Music of Time. So numerous are the odd and diverting characters who flash in and out of his pages that...

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