From Scientific American
Preoccupied, I nodded. Pencil and pad at hand I said, "Title and author, please."
"Discovery of Freedom by Rose Wilder Lane."
I scribbled the information. "Fine. Thanks."
It took awhile to locate a copy. Discovery of Freedom wasn't available in book stores, but a worn volume was finally found in a used book emporium and the purchase was made. I took the book home with me and began to read it that very evening.
I was captivated, enthralled, caught up in the grandeur of the concepts which marched one after another across the pages.
Here is an epic depicting the story of humanity. It provided a backdrop and spotlighted performances by its stars. It is philosophy and history at the same time. But it is a record of human history, not a story of generals or politicians, preening and strutting before the masses. It is about the people who build the bridges, cut down the trees, plant the crops, sail the seas, who mine and manufacture, who have children and who suffer and survive and somehow manage to make life possible and even pleasant.
It is a story which contains wry humor, satire, and much wisdom. And there is a thread of wisdom which can shake a person to the roots. I couldn't put the book down. I absorbed everything in it. Or, perhaps more accurately, the book absorbed me. It is one of the great books of the twentieth century.
[This is] a work that is so powerful it may well have launched the modern freedom movement. Originally published in 1943, Discovery had the impact of a lightening bolt, setting intellectual fires that burn brighter than ever among the modern intellectuals who are leading the growing assault on government control of our lives.
This is a book of timeless importance. It must be read by anyone who is seriously interested in the heritage of liberty--not just in America, but the world over. And reading it is a joy. Lane, who is said to have written the book 'at white heat,' was at once a brilliant thinker and a gifted storyteller.
This book is a withering attack on statism, nationalism, and what Nobel Laureate F. A. Hayek calls the 'fatal conceit' of national economic planning. It is an intellectual tour de force that stood up to the collectivist paradigm of its time and pointed the way to rediscovering the principles of the American Revolution--a true revolution unlike those of the Old World that 'are revolutions only in the sense that a wheel's turning is a revolution.' Her exciting description of the revolutionary period (you can tell she wishes she'd been there to lend a hand to Paine, Mason, Jefferson and the gang) is the best of a brilliant book.
Rose Wilder Lane was a truly remarkable woman. Like Jefferson, she attacked life, living it to the fullest, as adventurer, journalist, world traveller, iconoclast, and just prior to her death, war corespondent in Vietnam. Not surprisingly, the clear-eyed determination and supercharged energy she brings to attacking the enemies of liberty in Discovery is unique among prominent proliberty writers. -- Ed Crane, president, Cato Institute