I didn't know what to expect from this book, considering Mr. Yee's popularity. Being part of the latest craze and adored by Oprah could polute the good intent of even the most devout but I found this book remarkably candid and thorough.
The mysticism of yoga is absent, replaced by caring detail. For instance, in the second section, Getting Ready to Practice, the parts of the body likely to be referred to in the book or videos are pointed out, clothing is suggested, props are explained and illustrated details are provided to improvise them, right down to how to properly fold a blanket. This sort of detail, the anticipation of each tiny question has been attended to in all parts of the book.
The third section, Falling Into Yoga, is my favorite. It begins with a summary of the 8 practices included, briefly discusses timing, breathing and the like and then proceeds to the practices. The first practice, A Playful Practice, is very gentle with flowing movements for stretching, twisting and opening followed by relaxation. Each pose has a photo and "Instructions" and "One Thing" to the right of them. The "One Thing is usually a metaphor, visualization or something to help you get it. I like this level of attention and thoughtfulness. As an aside, if the prose in these makes you snicker, move on and pay attention to the instructions. Some will find them helpful and others will not. They do not detract from the book either way. Anyway, following the details of the practice are two pages with tiny photos of each asana to facilitate practicing without flipping back and forth.
The conversations with Ms. Zolotow reveal Rodney Yee as a real person, not a celebrity or mystic. He has a personal life, a wife and children and the concerns that come with living, of having experienced a childhood and of being in this world. That he speaks so openly and modestly increased my respect for him tenfold.
I have many yoga books and tapes but I can't imagine finding another as accessible as this one.