I bought the earlier softbound version of this book, loved it. Then shortly after, this one came out. I realized that there would be overlap of some of the same recipes along with some new ones, I didn't care. So the main difference between this book and the former is that--the same recipes along with more new ones. I loved the first book so much, I had to get the newer, hardbound one. So here is my review of the first book which basically gives the same review for this one.
You will find breads from all parts of the world and more common ones including pita and English muffins, crumpets, etc. Lots of pics, all in color, on every single page, and multiple photos at that. Each recipe has a pic and most have 'how to' illustrations as well. The recipes are approachable and don't have a huge list of ingredients or instructions; and the instructions stick to one page or less. The recipes make use mostly of bread flours, but included are whole wheat, barley and buckwheat flour and cornmeal to name a few. Most amazingly, there is nutritional info at the bottom of the page for each recipe--listed are calories, carbs, sodium, fat, cholesterol, fiber, etc etc.. What bread book does that for you?
The only negative I have is that All but a few recipes use FRESH yeast. There is nothing anywhere giving conversion measurements of active or instant yeast to fresh yeast. I have never used fresh yeast nor is it easy to find. I checked other bread books and sites online and found that you cut back on dry yeast about 2/3, some sites say 1/2, so it's an experiment in progress. I am surprised that this is the only area the author ignored when everything else was done up to the nines, considering that yeast is not a small part of breadbaking. Yet, A scant few recipes DID use dry, not fresh, yeast--why the switch? No idea. Despite that, this book makes up for this oddity in many more positive ways.
I have tried three recipes so far and all are keepers. Made the Pane al cioccolato (chocolate bread) using 1/2 the amount of dry yeast to the amount called for of fresh yeast, it proofed in the time the book said. Very easy to make and tasty to eat. Today made the Poppy Seed Roll, cutting back 2/3 to dry yeast. To die for. Makes a HUGE, long loaf on only 3 cups of flour. I made the poppy filling a day ahead to make it even easier. I couldn't be happier with the results. The "Buchty" from Poland/Germany came out like clouds, soft and delicate pull-apart rolls. I experimented and put pearl sugar on top of some, left others plain. They work well as either a snack/dessert roll or a dinner roll that way. I even messed up on one of the process steps and after rebounding from that snafu, STILL had great results. That speaks volumes. I had never heard of this one before, but b/c it has a beautiful illustrative photo like every other recipe, it called my name. There are not just yeast breads in here. There are recipes for tortillas, cornbread, breadsticks, piadine, Virginia Spoon Bread, rotis, pooris, chapatis, naan (uses yeast), lavash, and others.