THE WORLD OF GEORGE ORWELL edited by MIRIAM GROSS
182 pages. Simon & Schuster. $12.95.
Coming Up for Air, George Orwell's fictional elegy for a vanished England, includes a celebration of boyhood fishing. The catch is lowly tench and carp, but the thrill comes from sitting by a green pool ringed with beech trees and watching a huge pike "that was basking in the reeds turn and plunge." Pike were beyond the boy's reach: "They'd have broken any tackle I possessed."
Orwell himself was just such an elusive creature. He was a great political journalist,...