A sequel to The Star Dwellers (1961, p. 795(J-273). This time Mr. Blish explores the future of freedom in a highly technical society. During the ""mission"" Jack Loftus, Sandbag Stevens and Dr. Langer have plenty of time to reflect on the variety of cultures evolving from a technological pattern. These diverse planet societies have been incorporated into the gigantic Federation of the Hegemony to which Earth is applying for membership. The determining factor is ""stability"" which Earth, as usual, most notably lacks. Politically-minded Earth is using her alliance with the ""Angels"" (beautiful, omniscient Star Dwellers) as a bargaining factor. The reluctant ambassador, Dr. Langer, and his associates determine the truth about the Federation (a dictatorship) and suddenly space seems too confining. But the Angels in the Outer Limits go to bat. A good space- probe with down to earth values.