The story of Dorothea Lynde Dix is meaningfully told by Rachel Baker whose other biographies for this age group (The First Woman Doctor, Sigmund Freud, etc.) have gained her a solid reputation. Known and loved for her remarkable pioneer work for mental hospitals, Dorothea Dix started life as a Bostonian grandchild destined for a prominent role in society but she thwarted her grandmother's attempts to make her a ""little lady"" by going into teaching and writing so thoroughly that she became ill in her early thirties and had to go to England to recuperate. It was there that she met Samuel Tuke, the humanitarian, and that her own ideas of care for the mentally ill took more solid root. At home, she was at first forbidden to work, but later with the help of Horace Mann, Whittier and others, she was able to get Federal aid appropriated and to see her cherished ideals -- of institutions based on love -- carried out before she died Miss Baker's narrative makes this quite real for the reader.