Edwin Way Teale, with a view to the centenary of Thoreau's death, has made Selections from the Writings of Henry David Thoreau and presents them here in a readable compendium. The character and great style of Thoreau come through to the reader beautifully in the wide play of epigrams and paragraphs drawn from his journals, letters and several books (Walden, Cape Cod, Civil Disobedience). The aphorisms range the field from thoughts on himself and the nature of man through his institutions to the nature of life and the partaking of nature. Throughout, his determined, clear-sighted optimism over the place of man in the universe (""Men are born to succeed, not fail"", ""If I am not I, who will be?"", ""The man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest"") and his relation to the world without (""What we call wildness is a civilization other than our own"") and the literary life (""How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live"") give a picture-window view of the great naturalist-author. A rewarding view it is, too. Biographical and editorial comments by Mr. Teale, whose name is appropriately known in the same tradition as his subject.