Most helpful critical review
5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Tricked by five star reviews
on July 5, 2003
I purchased this book mainly because of the positive remarks I read here on Amazon. The reviews are helpful in guiding my purchase most of the time but this time I got burned. There are some very important things that I have to clear up.
1. This book is NOT organized well. Similar pieces of information that would make more sense in the same section or chapter are many chapters apart. I spend a great deal of time flipping between chapters linking one fact to another trying to piece together underlying principles or purposes behind similar functionality, AND angrily wondering why so many similar sections were haphazardly scattered throughout the text.
2. The writing is DRY. I am a scientist, and I hate having to plow through technical, monotonous, fact-driven, unispired lectures. Scientific writing does not have to cause headaches or blurry vision. I'm not looking for a text that romances me with an ambiance of literary magic. I just want something worded in a way that is lucid, meaningful, and to the point ("Understanding Nutrition" is an excellent example of intelligent scientific writing that is also very readable). This text in sharp contrast is choppy, cumbersome, and aggravating.
3. "However" I am so sick of seeing this word thanks to this text. However shows up in the strangest places. Over and over again. It is very distracting to have to constantly stumble across this word while trying to make sense of the rest of the drivel surrounding it.
I am sure this book is a wealth of valuable information. It is just not worth it for me to spend the extra time and energy mining the text for that information. There are other books that cover the same material just in a logical order and worded in a more conversational -- less clinical -- way.
My last piece of advice is to do what I didnt do: check out the example pages. They wont convey the weak organization because the Table of Contents actually looks kinda organized but its deceptive. They will at least clue you in to writing style, but keep in mind that it only gets worse as the book goes along.
Compare it to the style in the example pages for a very similar book "Physiology of Sport and Exercise".