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Anthony Campbell's Book Reviews

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There are two motives for reading a book: one, that you enjoy it, the other that you can boast about it.
[Bertrand Russell]
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This site contains over 600 book reviews on a wide range of subjects, including science, medicine, philosophy, religion, evolution, psychology, and fiction. They reflect a pretty eclectic range of reading over many years. Please see the subjects list for details.

Disclaimer: Some of the reviews are of books supplied at my request by the publishers. I accept no remuneration from publishers or authors for writing these reviews and have no financial interest in any writing other than my own.

I like to think that I've given all the books reviewed here a fair run for their money, although naturally some have received a more careful reading than others. But I don't review books that I've given up on, for whatever reason: see On not finishing reading books.

Apart from occasional revisions to scoring, correction of typos, and improvements in phrasing, I seldom make changes to reviews after publication. When I do, I note the fact and explain my reasons.

Scoring (revised 24 September 2017)

Selected books are marked with * to indicate quality and importance. ("Importance" here is relative; a book on UFOs, for example, may get a score for importance in its field even though UFOs are not an important subject in themselves.) Previously I was using two grades (* and **), but I've decided that this distinction is pretty meaningless so there is now only *.

Scoring of this kind is in any case obviously highly subjective (it probably says as much about me as it does about the book) so take it as a very rough guide only. It usually reflects a quick judgement made just after writing the review (I occasionally change it later). The fact that a book has no star doesn't mean that I think it's no good. Almost all the books reviewed here are at least worth reading, in my opinion; there is little point in wasting my time or yours on really bad books.

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