Faulkner, the stellar verbal marathon winner, once again indulges in tortuous and tortured excesses in this new novel, reintroducing the Snopes of some of his earlier work. The hamlet is the backwash known as Frenchman's Bend, the scene opens as the Snopes move in. There is one son, who before long, as clerk in the store, has outtricked them all. His wife is his employer's daughter, an inanimate, lethargic girl with an oversupply of animal magnetism, who has married him to save her face. There is an idiot cousin and perversion at its worst. There is Mink Snopes, who murders the man who impounded his cattle, and is haunted by the baying of the hound. The unst inting allotment of the depraved and the fetid, familiar through various novels and short stories, make this beastly unpleasant. But Faulkner is a factor to reckon with, and you can't ignore him. I should think this would be sharply limited.