The author of I Write As I Please is as well equipped as anyone could be to interpret the Russia of the past ten years to the American reader. He has used the enigma of the famous Trials as his springboard, and in relating the ambiguities, the contradictions that went into that dark picture, he reflects the determination kf Stalin, at any cost, to eliminate dangers of potential Fifth Column activities. One gets vignettes of the leaders of Russia during these years -- the whys of the purges --the shock of the Munich Pact and its effect on the Kremlin. There is no whitewashing -- but one does finish the book with a somewhat clearer understanding of the purpose which governed each step -- the trials, the purge, the Finnish War, the pact with Germany -- and the undeviating determination to save Russia, for the Russians. The story of the trials reads like bits of a mystery story. The revelation of undercurrents in ten years of Russian history helps strengthen one's sharing of Duranty's conviction that ""Hitler cannot conquer Russia"". This is perhaps less detailed factually than the Hindus book, in its picture of preparedness in the making -- but there is more of the psychology back of the Russian diplomacy, neither all black nor all white. An important book.