Clearly caught up by his subject, Mr. Carter supplies an interestingly annotated bibliography, noting who is to be trusted and why, and quite fairly evaluating each book's contribution; he has also, to an extent, written his own epitaph, since Adele Nathan's First Transatlantic Cable--""fictionalized in spots, but true to the essential facts""--will suffice for most children and be the first choice of the younger ones. The trouble with Mr. Carter's book (besides its lack of a map) is that it appears, physically, to be simple, even summary, and turns out to be not really demanding but thorough and detailed. The difficulties of financing and refinancing, the technical disputes, the interplay of personalities, While pertinent, entwine and tend to engulf the drama of successive failures and eventual success. Which is all very well if you want it all. There's also an introductory chapter tracing telegraphy from early signalling, a concluding section following cables around the globe and spotting improvements. The style is at best lackluster; the content is considerable.