This book gets five stars for content, but three stars for format, so I settled on four. Let me complain first:
* The book has no index. Even though it's over 600 pages long, lack of an index wouldn't be so much of a problem if the tome wasn't split up into three books, with the same information presented in different levels of intricacy in all three sections. Meanwhile, the table of contents is *too* in depth. So, to find information a certain topic, I have to read the forty page table of contents, and then flip to three different parts of the book. I think I'll probably be making a quick index for myself on the inside of the back cover.
* The book is too long. I'm not saying I would have left out any of the information (well, not much of it), but I would have reduced the font to a more normal print size and at least cut out the sections where paragraphs were repeated, word for word, in different sections.
* The book meanders a lot. I understand wanting to have a "beginner" section at the beginning of the book, but I think that The Practical Beekeeper needs to embrace what it really is --- an in depth guide for the intermediate to advanced beekeeper. If all of the information on foundationless frames, for example, were in the same part of the book, it would be much, much easier to read.
Complaints aside, the book was well worth the price tag. I've been perusing Michael Bush's website for years, and am thrilled to have all of the information in book form so that I can peruse it at my leisure. His book begins where most beekeeping books stop, answering all of the questions you come up with after raising bees for a year or two. Meanwhile, Bush proves that you really can raise bees without chemicals! Although less polished, The Practical Beekeeper is a better choice than Natural Beekeeping for those of us wanting to raise bees as naturally as possible.