A voluminous collection of sixty autobiographical excerpts via time-tested sources, contrasting from Nancy Hale's exclusive Copley-Plaza dancing school to Malcolm X's Roseland State Ballroom. For the most part this is divided between its youthful appeal and its nostalgia for an earlier time before the city lights were dimmed and the urban past became an uglier present. Among the cavalcade of contributors, Henry Adams, Tarkington, Frank Norris and Dreiser, Thurber and E.B. White, Mary Ellen Chase and Edna Ferber, Richard Wright and Ralph Ellison, all from representative (viz. familiar) works and with very brief annotations by the editors. The title notwithstanding, this is primarily a reconnaissance through the ""magic terrain of childhood,"" many childhoods.