The fourth edition of this multiauthored textbook represents an ambitious effort to treat an area which has clearly outgrown the established structure of previous editions. The list of contributing authors is exemplary, and for the most part the text is well-organized and beautifully written. The work achieves a professed goal in that basic considerations are preserved within the framework of its general clinical orientation, but in this regard the book's strength is its major weakness; the problem is one of scope. Indeed, it might be questioned whether such an undertaking could be completely successful, and it is especially noteworthy here that the almost pervasive deficiency is in material derived from pediatrics.
Three introductory chapters deal succinctly with intermediary metabolism and are both readable and rewarding. A section on mineral metabolism is so concise as to be little more than an outline in which, for example, metabolic bone disease is handled