This is a prosaic account of an often glamourized, popularized profession and for that very reason certainly a better balanced picture than most. In part personal, modest at all times, and in part theoretical, this is a surgeon's story of surgery. He- who is now associate professor at Johns Hopkins Medical School and visiting surgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital, turns back the leaves of memory to his own backdoor entry, helped by John Finney and by experiences of the first world war. He writes too of the routine of a hospital service; of the training of young doctors, of the severe practical problems of making a living; of moral obligations- the whole truth and when to tell it; of the political concomitants of private practice- and the malpractice of fee splitting; of patients' attitudes and resentments; of the nurse shortage. And always the recurrent stress on removal of the surgeon from private practice to be placed under the aegis of the hospital.... Plainclothes version of men in white, humane and liberal in viewpoint, but not for the drama market of this genre.