A good beginning book for cultural backgrounds of America but only a beginning. More art and less biography, more appreciation with emphasis and clarification of the whys and wherefores is needed. But this -- so far as it goes -- makes a definite contributions, as the author shows American artists, discovering art in their own yards, working painstakingly to develop an art peculiarly American. She has chosen incidents in the lives of well-known American artists like West, Copley, Stuart, Whistler, Audubon, Sargent, Grant Wood and so on, not confining her field too sharply to an early period. Photographic reproductions, unfortunately not in color, are grouped in a section in the back of the book. Unfortunately the book is not indexed, though it has a fairly full Table of Contents and Listing of Illustrations. Line decorations.