Books: Amazing Grace

THE UPSTART by PIERS PAUL READ 335 pages. Lippincott. $7.95.

Imagine a 1970s Heathcliff sitting in the study of Wuthering Heights, dressed in a country gentleman's tweeds. He has spent the morning keeping tab on his prosperous estate. Now, while his beautiful young wife and chil dren await him for 5 o'clock tea, he neatly taps on an electric typewriter his dark history of humiliation, vengeance and— since he is a Catholic convert—reform.

In The Upstart, Piers Paul Read, novelist son of the distinguished British critic Sir Herbert Read, certainly sounds more like the child of a match between Emily Bronte and Graham...

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