Review: From the preface: ``The William Lowell Putnam mathematical competition, since its inception in 1938, has had a substantial impact on the field of mathematics in the United States and Canada. It rivals in this respect the classic Tripos in Cambridge and the influential Eötvös competition in Hungary. While there have been many different reasons for the remarkable expansion of mathematics during the past forty years, we believe that the challenge provided by the Putnam competition has led many gifted college students into serious involvement with mathematics, and our profession is the richer for it. \par ``Although this book is primarily about the problems, we have included four articles about the competition from the American Mathematical Monthly: Garrett Birkhoff's account of the founding of the competition, L. E. Bush's summary of the contests, and an important exchange of views between L. J. Mordell and L. M. Kelly. We hope that these articles will give additional perspective on the role of the competition in American mathematics. The first twenty-five competitions involved a total of three hundred forty-seven problems.''