The Desert World ($19.95; Oct. 1996; 130 pp.; 0-8101-6018-8): This 1927 novel by the accomplished poet and translator (18871976) who has been favorably compared with Gide--as well as with Mauriac and Bernanos--explores with admirable economy and emotional intensity the intertwined fates of an unlikely mÇnage Ö trois: a troubled male homosexual, a poet who portentously declares himself ``entirely indifferent to sexual practices,'' and the woman, who, unwisely, loves them both too well. Here, as in his other novels (including Pauline 1880, 1973, etc.), Jouve writes very feelingly about people torn by the conflicting claims of sexuality and spirituality, and this eloquent rÇcit fairly vibrates with the force of his characters' passion to understand, and to save themselves. A beautiful and memorable work, expertly translated.