The cover of this book is admittedly deceiving. If you're going in for an extensive handbook of medical instruments aided by photographs, you will be very disappointed. What this volume does provide, however, is a sizable range of beautifully illustrated renderings of antique medical tools spanning from the 1500s to the mid-1900s. On top of that, the text is entirely hand-written. Dr. Wilbur successfully conveys the history and development of many different instruments--from stethoscopes and otoscopes to amputation saws and leech jars--in a succinct and easy-to-understand manner that's never short of fascinating. The only problems I had were the book's short length (150 pages in a centimeter's thickness) and the occasional poor print quality of some of the illustrations borrowed from other medical books. Otherwise this book is well worth reading; it's as much a pain-staking work of art as it is an informative reference guide.