Despite the fact that the author is a priest and the publisher ordinarily identified with religious books, this is a book for the general reader. The author is an established authority on the great land mass known as Siberia. Here is a relatively unknown land of extremes of heat and cold, of great rivers, forests and lains, rich in almost untapped resources of wheatlands and minerals, is an area elonging to Russia which realizes to the full its potential development. Contemporary history demands recognition by the rest of the world of its significance. From sparse source material Yuri Semyonov has presented an adequate summary of the conquest and present development, of the pioneers and explorers. The Cossacks are accorded somewhat fuller attention, though the book is uneven in the handling of the men who made the land. As it touches on relatively recent history- the sale of aska to the USA, and on -- it takes on more immediate meaning. In view of the earth of information available, the book gains in significance and may well increase comprehension of a far-off country that is really not so distant from our hores, and should be so recognized in future foreign policy decisions. The somewhat deadpan style will militate against popular appeal but suggests a certain objectivity in reportage.