Books: Dixie Diaspora

MEMBERS OF THE TRIBE by Richard Kluger Doubleday; 471 pages; $10

English novels, a traditionalist feels, should begin with old men in armchairs, yarning about far places, and American novels should begin much as this one does, with a restless young man standing at dockside in a suit that is too hot for him, wondering cheerfully what is going to happen next. The waterfront in this sturdy and sometimes impassioned novel is that of Savannah, Ga., in the year 1878. The young man who has just disembarked there is 17-year-old Seth Adler, lately of New...

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