Like the Philippine archipelago, this is a curiously formless narrative, an accretion of insufficiently defined topics rather awkwardly and obviously bridged; but they are not really islands in that each impinges on the other--the reader cannot isolate the information pertaining to a particular one. This deficiency is especially pronounced in the long heterogeneous first chapter on the contemporary country. The larger part of the book deals with history, which is fortunate since it is also the better part, although even here Mr. Roland tends repeatedly to anticipate the future, weakening both continuity and impact. When he reaches the period of American domination, his primary concern is to assess the United States' record, and relatedly to consider the adaptability of American institutions to the development of a new Asian country. This is certainly one way of looking at twentieth century Philippine history, and it has an attraction for the American student, but it is not the look from within that has been one of the strengths of this series. Despite these handicaps, the book does contain a great deal of reliable information (on social, economic and political matters as well as history) and it tries to be just in evaluating the continuing tensions between the countries.