After 17 Inspector Maigret suspense tales, one approaches a new Georges Simenon with preconceived ideas- only to find that this time he has written a very allic and very adroit novel of two strays from the Continent adrift in New York. It came out in France in 1946 and has been ably translated by Lawrence G. Blochman. It is both gay and wry. Francois, an actor, deserted by his wife is down to shabby tenement room in Greenwich Village and an occasional job on TV. Kay, met by chance in an all night joint, is also at loose ends, jobless, smoking and drinking too much, and given to embroidering tales of her past. At odds with life- and each other's miseries- they establish a strange pattern- a bar- a lunch countermiles of sidewalks tramped- and ""three beds""- until each is jolted into facing a emblance of truth- and each other. Slim, skillful.