W. G. East's book focuses on the diplomacy that took place in the international community leading up to the union of the Romanian Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia. He does well in his depiction of the views of the different sides of this debate. He describes France's argument in favor of allowing the Principalities to unite (he, in fact, includes an entire chapter discussing Napoleon III's stance on the issue) and the debate between all of the powers in their efforts not to offend the Ottomans.East also explains the debate over whether Romania ought to have a hereditary or a foreign prince, displaying Ali Pasha's unease with the idea that a hereditary prince would submit to Russia, and thus Romania's goal to become independent would vanish into another dependency. East's emphasis on this debate is warranted, given the precarious political situation revolving around the answers to these questions. The unification of the principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia in 1859 became the crucial stepping stone towards independence. In The Union of Moldavia and Wallachia, 1859, W. G. East describes the events leading up to and including this occasion. He provides readers with a brief history of the two Principalities, but the focus of this study takes place between 1855 and the Conference of Paris in 1858. What East does not discuss in significant detail is the domestic concerns and debates that took place within the Romanian Principalities. Rather, he discusses the roles played by the Great Powers with regards to the Principalities, particularly their conflicts with one another. Placing Russia in check and maintaining the status quo in the East was the priority for all of the Western powers, and the debate revolved around whether or not the unity of the Principalities would help or hinder the achievement of that goal.