A pleasant, smooth-writin' ex-Texan examines in a leisurely fashion that gargantuan spread and state of mind that is Texas; he theorizes that the still-existent frontier plus a sudden infusion of capital created its mores and maladies. Texans, bred to the ways of the pioneer where a man relied on his own good judgment to protect his own best interests, applied the same principles as oil wealth poured in--daredevil manipulation, headlong pursuit and ""always a sense of action."" Mr. Nevin supplies some profiles along the way: a frontier ranch manager, a brace of business tycoons, an oppressed migrant worker (Texans are just beginning to be aware of the problems of minority groups); a gay little culture purveyor (who removes the gamey parts from Shakespeare); one President of the United States who possesses the Texas power to mystify and occasionally terrify. An interesting section deals with the physical magnitude of Texas--its massive floods, droughts and wind storms; its sparse plains and diverse topography. A balanced, readable estimate: the ayes of Texas along with the neighs.