If candor could have died with a reasonable degree of reticence, this might have been more bearable. Mrs. Lees has appropriated a little Marcuse and Norman Brown and some of the situation ethics now known as ""honest sex,"" to tell the story of Lucia, a votary of passion. Denied, at least not altogether satisfied, by her sometimes remote Quaker husband Owen. During a three months' vigil at the deathbed of her father, she meets a younger woman Jill who is a liberating influence. On to a soldier picked up on the road, an analyst, and from the couch to the bed of Josh--an affair which goes on for years but which helps her to be much more giving at home. Until giving begets--a baby at forty--and while the paternity is doubtful, it does eventually confirm the values of her marriage. . . . In the sentimental bloat of fulfillment, honest sex speaks the ""body language of marriage"" and along with Lucia's ""vernal sapflowing"" and ""beautiful burgeoning,"" how about that rising gorge.