An extensive biography of John Brown examines the many motives that culminated in the Harper's Ferry raid and maintains the high standards the author set in The Good Ways (1950, P. 357), which was an inspiring study of comparative religions. A full length study, the book begins with Brown's childhood and the parental influences that turned him into the dedicated yet stern and impractical man he was. Brown was a boy of the woods and one way or another remained a pioneer all his life. That he planned and lived with the idea of the raid years before its execution comes forth as the outstanding fact of the book and one reads with fascination as Brown's convictions grow-and leap the bounds of wisdom to the point where they eventually inspired a nation. In the light of the often harsh events that led up to the raid its aftermath and trial take on added significance and rony too, so that one is left wondering about right and wrong and their eventual meaning for mankind. A healthy stimulus for young readers.