Books: Iron Curtain Raisers

THE ENEMY (143 pp.)—Tibor Mercy —Criterion ($3).

SIGH FOR A STRANGE LAND (188 pp.)—Monica Stirling—Atlantic—Little .Brown ($3.50).

When the Chinese want to wish anyone harm, according to Novelist Monica Stirling, they say, "May you live at an interesting period of history." The saying may or may not be authentic, but its barbed humor especially befits the century in which the high cost of living has been surpassed only by the higher cost of staying alive. Authors Meray and Stirling take a Communist Party bureaucrat and a teen-age refugee girl, respectively, and evoke contrasting symbols...

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