A noted historian and an experienced writer examine the branches of the US government as the nation confronts the next 100 years; the result is useful, but marred by undistinguished language and poor organization. The constitutional origins of each branch are discussed; later chapters take up significant eras, focusing on the major historical issues that have influenced each individual branch of government, and how each confronted the issues and was changed by them. The volumes share a common introduction; the brief conclusions, suggesting issues likely to arise in the coming century, differ. These texts do structure large amounts of important information in a clear, accessible format for readers unfamiliar with their subjects. However, the interior organization is sometimes confusing, with facts often appended in parentheses rather than integrated into the text. Also, the need to impart so much material has led to oversimplification and to language that is uneven, even inelegant at times, resulting in material that is merely serviceable where it could have been exceptional. No sources are given, but there are slightly annotated suggestions ""For Further Reading."" Indexes.