This is fundamentally a man's book, and the central and dominant figure is the Columbia River, rather than the character of Caleb Paige, whose life was controlled by his overmastering love of the river and his ambition to be a captain behind the wheel of a river boat. Into the story is woven the pattern of the opening up of the wilderness, along the reaches of the river and its tributaries, with the discovery of gold and the building of new towns. And there is, in Caleb's life, a second love, which wrecks his marriage and almost wrecks his career. The pace of the story is secondary to its sweep as an epic of a frontier. Sure of big sales in the Northwest and the West. Publishers backing it to big things.