Few important health subjects are as poorly reported or underreported as the beneficial effects of radiation. Few Americans have heard of hormesis -- the beneficial effects of toxins in small doses -- or of the possibility that low-dose radiation may prevent or treat cancer and other diseases.
So, the release of this book was long overdue, and it is disappointing that it is not a better book.
The chatty style does not befit the subject. The documentation is not sufficient. Even the index is poor. Why would there be no author bio for a science book? Don't readers deserve to know more about the person who wrote it? (He is listed on a web site as "aerospace engineer and an electrical control manufacturer's representative.") I don't fault Hiserodt for serving as a reporter (since he isn't a radiation health expert), and he seems to have talked to the right experts, but a bio page is essential.
Among the best books on environmental health in the past 20 years are Edith Efron's "The Apocalytics," and " Bjorn Lomborg's "The Skeptical Environmentalist." "Underexposed" is inferior to those in every respect. It is slapdash and confusing to read. It needed the hand of a strong editor.
Radiation hormesis is a critical topic. If the theory is true -- and excellent evidence points that direction -- increasing radiation exposures could save many lives. At the very least we could all relax about what are now thought by many to be unhealthy exposure levels. The book that provides a comprehensive and clear introduction to the topic for a general audience has yet to be written.
I recommend the book only because so little has been written on the subject, and there isn't anything else available for non-technical readers. It's a modest beginning.