I took this book (and "Let's Go-Italy") on my 3-week solo cycling tour of Northern Italy and Tuscany. Rick has so much useful information for the independent traveller.
My itinerary was from Florence to Siena, then back up to San Gimignano, Volterra, back through Siena to Montalcino, Pienza, and Montepulciano. I then rode down to Orvieto and the short ride to Civita di Bagnoregio. A train to Venice, then my ride through the Dolomites and Alto Adige from Cortina d'Ampezzo to Brunico,Bressanone, and Bolzano. From there I went west to Passo di Tonale, the Gavia Pass (a couple of days before the Giro d'Italia), then to Bormio, Tirano, and over to Lake Como. I wrapped things up in Milano.
Rick's guide was invaluable, not only for the information about these places, but also for the fact that he opens up the wonders of the hill towns that most guidebooks ignore (you can't enjoy "discovering" places that you can't find in other guides!). The hill towns were definitely a highlight of the trip.
Rick's sensitivity to the more adventurous, independent tourist results in the feeling that you're travelling with a friend who knows the place.
Cyclists: don't buy a map in the States. Get situated in whatever country you're going to, and chances are the book stores in the foreign airport, and even service stations, will have a much better selection, which you can tailor to your itinerary. One personal caveat about riding in the Italian Alps and Dolomites is to be prepared to skirt tunnels. Unlike France, many tunnels in Italy are off-limits to cyclists. It was so confusing trying to find alternate routes around the tunnels, that I finally saw the need for a Garmin GPS for my bicycle, after 20 years of cycling in foreign countries! As a lifelong resident of the area around Bormio (and serious cyclist) told me (after the carabinieri politely told me to stay out of the tunnels), the locals are also confused by bad road signage! Don't feel you need to buy a GPS just to cycle in northern Italy, but it IS a big help.
All in all, Rick is head and shoulders above most in his European guides. Highest recommendation.