The subtitle, “The History of Pure and Applied Optics,” best describes the contents of this book.  It is a collection of many individual sketches of optics applications—many of them new or of current interest. Each sketch is developed with its own history and the author provides many useful references. However, the book reads like a hastily written first draft and not a polished manuscript. There are many oversights, several duplications and self-contradictions. None of the graphs and diagrams are labeled and there is no index.

Despite all of these blemishes, if the reader has a good prior understanding of rays, waves (especially) and photons, reading this book will be a pleasant and worthwhile experience.

Review by Albert Claus, Loyola University Chicago, USA

The opinions expressed in the book review section are those of the reviewer and do not necessarily reflect those of OPN or OSA.