Books: Eagle & X-er

THE BIBLE SALESMAN (257 pp.)—Alma Stone—Doubleday ($3.95).

Every so often a book appears that celebrates the charm of scruffiness, the gaiety of the seedy, the high-held honor of those who fish about in trash barrels.

Saroyan wrote this sort of ragpickers' polka, and so, in a quieter tempo, does Novelist Alma Stone. Her poor are the people of Manhattan's upper Broadway—watery-eyed men propped on their elbows in old. moneylosing bars, solitary old ladies who roost on park benches and share their tuna sandwiches with cats.

The author is so ruthlessly imaginative that she does not...

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