The author brings a fresh approach to some fairly well-worked material. He explores the qualities that made certain political bosses unique. What made them possible was voter apathy and the inability of reform candidates to get out the vote and to ooddle it the way the bosses were willing to do. Mark Hanna's genius was for nationwide organization and publicity with techniques that match those of the mid-20th century. Ed Crump is described as a man who could pull off the difficult feat of providing Memphis with a surface ""clean"" government while systematically stripping voters of their freedom of choice. Boston's unpredictable Curley kept his balance by keeping friends and enemies off theirs. St. Louis' Jordan chambers corraled the Negro vote. Connecticut's John Bailey hand-picks candidates and issues. Much scattered materials is puled together here. With the exception of Bialey, these prototype bosses are long since dead. The book is written with journalistic skill enough to leave readers with the hope that Mr. Martin will write a sequel analyzing contemporary bosses.