Analysis: With an Introduction to Proof, 4th edition Hardcover – Nov 29 2004
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"Let me begin by saying that I really like this book, and I do not say that of very many books. What impresses me most is the level of motivation and explanation given for the basic logic, the construction of proofs, and the ways of thinking about proofs that this book provides in its first few sections. It felt that the author was talking to the reader the way I would like to talk to students. There was an air of familiarity there. All kinds of useful remarks were made, the type I would like to make in my lectures." Aimo Hinkkanen, University of Illinois at Urbana
"The writing style is suitable for our students. It is clear, logical, and concise. The examples are very helpful and well-developed. The topics are thoroughly covered and at the appropriate level for our students. The material is technically accurate, and the pedagogical material is effectively presented." John Konvalina, University of Nebraska at Omaha
From the Publisher
A solid presentation of the analysis of functions of a real variable -- with special attention on reading and writing proofs. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.See all Product Description
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Then the book goes into a very nice introduction to topology. Basic concepts like open/closed sets, accumulation points, compact sets, etc. Topology can be a little intimidating simply because it's _so_ abstract, but this book makes the basic concepts very easy to understand, and prepares one for a more advanced course in topology. Alot of (good) Elementary Analysis books leave topology out, but I'm glad this book contained it. It is a very interesting subject.
All the material in the book is explained probably about as easily as the concepts CAN be explained. If you still have trouble with it, you might consider a different major. Not to say that this book transforms a very difficult subject into a pathetically easy piece of cake because that's impossible, but the material is presented probably as easily as it can be in order to maintain precision and detail (which is the whole point of Analysis).
The book is definitely not running short in the examples or end-of-section problems department, so that is another plus. The problems at the end of each section range in difficulty from problems that almost exactly match an example worked in detail in the section, to fairly challenging problems. With enough time though the average student could probably do every problem at the end of every section.
I'd recommend this book for self study as well as a supplement to any introductory analysis course. If you have already have exposure to rigorous proof of calculus theorems, then this book will probably be too basic for you.
The reason this book got 4 stars instead of 5 is because of its utterly ridiculous price. Just as good is Elementary Analysis: The Theory of Calculus, ISBN: 038790459X, except that it doesn't include the section on Topology ...
My original intention was to take a course with Rudin, but after I've realized I had a hard time digesting his style, I've decided to take more elementary course. I knew the course would be using Lay, so I got this textbook and tried to learn it on my own, but wasn't sure how I was doing and ended up taking the course (still with Lay) anyway. So I'm quite familiar with this textbook. The only topics we didn't cover is "series" and "sequences and series of functions".
Now overall I would say it's a mixed bag. First, the good things. The first few introductory sections on sets and proof techniques are excellent, highly recommended, that's how I learned how to prove. I found exercises very useful.
Now things I don't like. First, lots of typos. I think I had 4th edition, and still I've managed to find over 20 misprints, incorrect references, etc, etc, all were reported directly to author. Second, and that's probably more important, in several instances the proofs are too convoluted and not self-motivating. To be more specific, the proof of Heine-Borell theorem is less than adequate. It is correct, but that's the kind of proof you read and then entirely forget how it went. I remember on the first reading I didn't feel comfortable with this proof at all. When I discussed this book with professor I was going to take that course with, he (surprisingle) agreed with me and told me he would present a different proof (and he did, much better one). Another example: proof that the modified Dirichlet function is Riemann-integrable. The proof can be substantially simplified. In fact, I've managed to simplify it. Finally, the same professor told me Lay's presentation of Riemann integrals had some holes in them, so he used Kirkwood instead. In fact he told me he was making choice between Kirkwood and lay (but ended up choosing Lay because he didn't like Kirkwood's book layout. Kind of funny reason, I think.)
In any case, I think Kirkwood is a bit better for self-study. Unfortunately it doesn't have intro to proofs, logic and sets. Ideally you should have both books, if you plan for self-study.
(note: I did took the Principles of analysis, after I've finished that one with Lay, and did quite well.)
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