Books: Muted Memoir FACES IN MY TIME by Anthony Powell

Holt, Rinehart & Winston; 230 pages; $14.95

FACES IN MY TIME

by Anthony Powell

Holt, Rinehart & Winston

230 pages; $14.95

After twelve volumes of his justly celebrated sequence, A Dance to the Music of Time, Anthony Powell, 75, has established himself as the reigning novelist of British understatement. In this third volume of his autobiography, the master whisperer so thoroughly muffles the barbarous yawps of the mid-20th century—from Dylan Thomas to World War II—that they emerge as discreetly as the sound of one teacup cracking.

As this most seemly of chronicles begins, Powell, 28, is about to marry Violet Pakenham, 22. An opportunity, surely, for a passing brushfire...

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