Infectious Blood Diseases of Man and Animals. Diseases Caused by Protista, Volume I, Special Topics and General Characteristics

Edited by David Weinman, Department of Microbiology, Yale University, and Miodrag Ristic, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois, Urbana. xvi + 492 pages. Academic Press, New York and London. 1968. $26.00

Franklin A. NevaDepartment of Tropical Public Health Harvard School of Public Health, 25 Shattuck Street Boston, Massachusetts 02115

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This book is yet another product of a publishing pattern that has become familiar to the scientific community. Take an assortment of subjects, rearrange them under a “catchy” title, and then market a grossly overpriced book that simultaneously advertises forthcoming volumes. The result in this case is a mixed bag. Scientific information has proliferated at such a rate that reviews of almost any subject could be written at frequent intervals. Even an incomplete compilation of references on a given subject is often useful, and one can usually glean a few new facts or ideas from most review articles. Thus, excessive criticism of a book such as this puts a reviewer somewhat in the position of attacking religion or motherhood. But, seriously, hasn't this gimmick been overexploited?

Infectious Blood Diseases of Man and Animals is a 492-page collection of 14 chapters by 21 contributors. “Protistan blood diseases” are defined in the foreword as “that group caused by microorganisms which pass a major portion of their lifetime in the blood.”