Two comments, made by the author, convey the essence of the strength and weakness of this book better than I can. Of Beatrice Webb she says:- ""Her life history is the social history of two generations"" -- but she acknowledges that ""like the happy countries, she had almost no personal history""....The book is valuable as a social document; as a personal record it seems cold, almost colorless. Beatrice Potter's girlhood prepared her for a conventional life in a social atmosphere of conservative ""county""- she ""came out""- had her London season- was schooled for running on elaborate household in upper-class society. Herbert Spencer, a friend of the family, opened some windows for her. But her own restless urge to break the bonds carried her beyond and her marriate to Sidney Webb became a life partnership,- in the Fabian Society, as advocates of Trade Unionism, Co-operatives, Socialism, as founders of the London School of Economics, as inaugurators of programs for social betterment that are reflected in today's Beveridge Report, as honored guests of the USSR and as authors of Soviet Communism and numerous other works in their especial field.