An interesting and extremely useful volume. . . . Ferdon provides the reader with an easy-to-read and effective overview into the Tongan Islands for the years under discussion. . . . A must for any serious Pacific student and should be in every library.
It is a wide-ranging and well-knit account of the traditional way of life in Tonga, and serves as a baseline from which the thorough-going changes consequent upon European contact may be traced and assessed. . . . His concern is to present Tonga as it was seen by its early literate visitors, and he has succeeded admirably.