Mr. Powell, who has written on the Tar Heel State previously (including North Carolina in the First Book format), obviously knows and understands his subject--the reader may have some difficulty. Particularly careless is the treatment of events through the period of proprietary neglect: the procedures for implementing the crucial 1663 charter are not spelled out; at no time are the qualifications for voting listed; and generalizations such as ""democracy was developing too rapidly in North Carolina"" are not explained. But with the advent of stability under Royal Governor Johnson, the influx of Highland Scots, Scotch-Irish and Germans, the new prosperity and general progress, the account becomes more circumspect and clearer. The conflict between eastern and western counties (including the Regulators' insurrection) draws lessons that have validity for American history generally. But the book as a whole has little general interest though it may serve, despite its deficiencies, to supplement social studies in the area.