Letters from Alaska is based thematically upon the wilderness and its capacity for renewal of the American spirit. The form of Book I, though not strictly epistolary, hinges upon the predominant first person; he, Ansley Perkins, strives to retain possession of self against the fracturing influences of the civilization he leaves. His struggle is resolved upon his arrival in Alaska. His quest for the hero ends with himself. The surface time frame of this novel is approximately three weeks, though, using the precept of the omnipresent past, I've attempted an overview of the fifties and early sixties in this country through a young man's eyes.