Understanding Baking gives the student baker all the baking science he or she will actually ever need in day to day operations. This new edition has a much friendlier tone and eliminates a great of the repetition and overly arcane or dated material that existed in the previous editions. Theory and concepts are related to actual products much more clearly. Rees/Amendola lucidly and concisely explain the chemistry of ingredient interaction, baking physics and supply useful ingredient definitions. The reference tables and troubleshooting guides are helpful and clear. The new information on wild yeast starter/artisan bread is timely and interesting as is the discussion of trans and cis fats. Any pastry chef can tell you that the most complicated presentations begin with a good grounding in the basics. From there, it's up to you. Industrial baking, which this edition, for the most part, sidesteps, is now so specialized, automated and artificially preserved you need an whole set of encyclopedias to understand the processes that are usually performed by a machine. On the other hand, with this book and it's companion volume, The Baker's Manual (also recently revised with many, many appealing new formulas), you could start a fine little pastry shop. It impowers you to be the best baker you can be.