Books: Bedrooms & Back Alleys

MOUNTOLIVE (318 pp.)—Lawrence Durrell—Duffon ($3.95).

In this, the third of a projected quartet of novels, Author Durrell continues the febrile investigation of life and love in prewar Egypt so splendidly begun in Justine (TIME, Aug. 26, 1957) and Balthazar (TIME, Aug. 25, 1958). Most of the same characters are still loping through the bedrooms and back alleys of Alexandria: Pursewarden, the slightly mad novelist-diplomat; Justine, the dark-browed, amoral Jewess; Nessim, her millionaire Coptic Christian husband; Darley, the sad-sack Irish schoolteacher; Melissa, the tuberculous Greek dancer. But the protagonist of this new book is a relative newcomer, David Mountolive, who returns to Egypt...

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