In this vividly written book its Canadian-born author, Professor of History at the University of Toronto, has achieved the difficult task of compressing 400 years of history and the width of a continent into a single compact account of Canadian political and social development from 1534, when French explorers first reached the St. Lawrence, to the present day. With a refreshing disregard of the intricacies of military campaigns the author tells of the early clashes between British and French settlers in North America and of the bloody 18th-century wars that ended with the British conquest of Canada and- also, an offshoot, with the American Revolution and the influx of Loyalist refugees into the Canadian Maritime Provinces. Nineteenth-century commercial and financial problems and the vehement independence of scattered provinces led to internal political battles, while border irritations sparked by the Civil War and American expansionists brought the two countries more than once to the verge of a shooting war. With the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railroad in the 1880's and under the leadership of a series of remarkable men Canada achieved a sense of unity as a Dominion of the British Commonwealth; in the 20th century she is recognized as a nation in her own right. Although primarily of concern to Canadian readers, this terse and readable volume should also appeal to Americans interested in the historical background of the two countries; a valuable and much needed reference textbook, it should find a place in college and public libraries of North American history.