This corporation opera is based mainly upon a style of dialogue that masticates every subject into a fine mash before gently spooning it down the reader's hroat. Harry Lovett, Consolidated Bell's vice president (AT&T), who is 43, 6'2"" and has been with AT&T for twenty years, has the self-appraisal blues--that old Marquand Point-of-No-Return syndrome. ""Where was this vaunted view from the summit? Where, "" Second Complication: Lovely Wife Nan, waiting for him in his office, wants to masticate the problem of their 11-year-old daughter's recent death (hit by a car). She is now a bored (ex) matron, Nan is, and regrets not getting her Ph.D. in Soc. Can you understand that when I say I regret not doing it, I'm not regretting our marriage itself? But Harry, Harry, my darling, you still have a claim on great expectations, and I don't want to spoil the fun of your future successes with discontent. The way I have in the past."" Third Complication: Harry has been having affair with his secretary. Harry and an office crony masticate this problem. old geezer named Virtue Smith, the best character in the book, is writing down corporation's history sub rosa like Sam Pepys in Pitman shorthand. But, as that says, tamping his pipe and frowning: ""Harry, let's face a few realities.