This book is quite interesting as an historical document. It is, by the author's own admission, incomplete and at times was uninterpretable. As a piece of martial arts history - it is a treasure. One can begin to see how a martial art migrated, was passed on and even how it influenced and influenced by, other styles. There are, of course, many unanswered questions. The Bubushi was undoubtedly of great value, but grammatical errors and uninterpretable, obsolete Chinese characters and time have made the true meanings of many of the parts, unknowable.
What I came away with was, judging by the scope of knowlege the Bubushi covers, the martial arts practitioner of the past was a well rounded individual in the truest sense. Science, medicine, anatomy and philosophy as well as the martial techniques were all a part of the makeup of the martial artist.
There are too many limitations to make the Bubishi a modern martial arts bible. Among others, there are really NO complete training guidelines, the medicine/treatments are incomplete, and the lethal striking points are unexplained (i.e. WHERE to strike may be explicitly documented, but HOW to strike and with what technique, and how hard is not addressed).
As a book (hopefully one of many) the student of martial arts would study to understand the roots of their art, I would say it is a good read. As an instructional tome I would be quite wary. The author points out the limitations of his reasearch. He is aware of the shortcomings of the final product and he cautions the reader appropriately. But he has given us a fascinating view of the past, cobbled together and distorted as it is.
So beware. This book is like being the last one in line at a game of telephone. We hear what has been passed on by the previous person, but do not really know if it is a complete and accurate interpretation of the original. This is not the fault of the author, it is just what is....