This is an unusual and engaging book of travel in Iraq in about 1956. Mrs. Dickson is Scottish and an artist, and although she does her best to disclaim her talent and subdue all autobiographical elements (such as her official reasons for her stay in Iraq with her husband), her book is strongly and pleasantly flavored with her personality. A native talent for observation and for self-mocking cheerfulness under trying domestic conditions underscores a delightful account of Baghdad with its wonderfully inefficient welding of old (craftsmen, bazaar people) and new (traffic policemen and the post office). There is also a strong element of the determined Baedeker reader in some of her earlier excursions to ruined and outlying holy cities. But throughout the book are excellent, black and white pictures- like woodcuts, and it is this artist's eye for the striking scene that gradually comes to dominate as she travels down into the isolated marshy countries between Iran and Iraq, through deserts, into experimental communities, , English villages perched on beautiful and inaccessible mountains, etc., etc. Mrs. Dickson writes with a magnificent eye for the striking scene and has written an intensely visual, personal book to be read at several levels.