At Swim-Two-Birds

by Flann O’Brien.Pantheon, $3.00.
In this fictional Irish stew, the author dishes up, seriously and spoofingly, all of the literary traditions of Ireland, from Celtic legend to James Joyce. Mr. Graham Greene, in a helpful note on the jacket, sums up the major plots as follows: “ You have a) the narrator writing a book about a man called Trellis, who is b) writing a book about certain characters, who c) are turning the tables on Trellis by writing about him.” I was too flummoxed to go along with Greene’s opinion that this wildly original novel is something of a masterpiece “in the line of Ulysses and Tristram Shandy.” But I found in it some very amusing pages.