This is the first volume in a new series, Nature and Natural History, under the editorial aegis of Joseph Wood Krutch: Platt wrote the earlier River of Life and the natural history award-winning This Green World and here too he shows an imaginative grasp of his subject ranging from cranberry bogs to mountain peaks, from lowly lichen to giant gymnosperm. The modern forests of today are discussed in detail, as well as the fossil ghost woodlands of the past and the dense wilderness reaches of the Indians and the explorers. Platt has synthesized his story of these external worlds with all that grows and lives there; there is a great deal of affiliated information on plant anatomy and physiology; on plant geography and ecology; and on the wildlife which has, or has not, survived. His book closes with an expected plea for conservation. Platt is perhaps the best popularizer in this field, and if he occasionally overdramatizes, he also writes with a visual appreciation of this outdoor world observed.