Another ""tranche de vie"" stooped in the naturalistic school squalor which had its first exponent in Zola and is carried on today by Farrell and others. This -- by the author of Summer in Williamsburg -- is set at Noptuno Beach (query -- Coney Inland, perhaps?) with a soda fountain the focal point. The people seem all in the grip of some depravity, each frustrated in the attainment of his obsession. An unparalleled picture of degradation and degeneracy, which in itself offers no contention nor conclusion. Its one power lies in its veracity - -so far as it goes, and to a limited few this veracity will justify the book, we presume.