Books: Small Wreath

SLICK BUT NOT STREAMLINED (185 pp.)—John Betjeman—Doubleday ($3).

John Betjeman, an Englishman with a Dutch name, is one of the pleasantest minor writers in the world. This book, a selection of his verse and prose, introduces him to the U.S. public. Betjeman (pronounced Betch-man) is minor but not slick; he is, in a very light and quiet way, a serious poet. If laurel wreaths may be awarded for a variety of sane satires and affections, for blandness of style and an ear for delectable rhythms, Betjeman deserves at least a small one.

Once an editor of England's Architectural Review and author of...

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