Dr. Remar is professor of history at Lewis and Clark College in Oregon. His first book on one of history's most perplexing and exasperatingly complex incidents which directly precipitated World War I is based on evidence available in the trial transcripts and on unpublished documents from the Austrian state archives. Conceding that the exact dates and circumstances of how Franz Ferdinand's murder was planned have never been established with certainty, this is the ""most likely"" reconstruction, which the author admits is still open to doubt. He traces the confused state of affairs in the Austro-Hungarian Empire which had been under the rule of Franz Joseph since 1848, the political unrest in the several provinces of the Empire, the fanatic machinations of the secret society, The Black Hand, the difficult personality of the Emperor's nephew, Franz Ferdinand, and the problems arising from his morganatic marriage, and the decision to assassinate Franz Ferdinand engineered by the Chief of Serbian Army Intelligence, a leading spirit of the Black Hand. Fearing that Franz Ferdinand's interference in affairs of state would mean the eventual collapse of Pan Yugoslavism, the assassins, young boys, murdered the Archduke and Duchess in Serbia on June 28, 1914, the result of which was the entangling cross-fire of declarations of war. He describes the events of the treason and murder trial and the fates of the assassins and their helpers ""only a few of whom lived long enough to witness the defeat of Austria and the creation of the Yugoslav state for which they hoped"". An intriguing record.