Dense in character, incident, and ideas, Smith's book is a compassionate history of The Group Theatre and the turbulent times that produced, adulated, and ground it up. Most of the greats in American actor training and theater practice came together in a blaze of idealism to change the quality of theater in this country by developing a high level of realistic ensemble acting and a theater directly responsive to political realities. Change theater they did, though not quite in the ways they intended. This book tells their story better than it has been told before. Its research is substantial, it is well written, and it is committed to what was right and lasting in The Group. Smith's book is required reading on the development of modern American theater.-- Thomas E. Luddy, Salem State Coll., Mass.