This is a terrific book, one that I would recommend to someone without a scientific background who just want to know a bit about thermodynamics, to a student (including high school students) just starting to learn about this subject, to graduate students who know quite a lot about it and even to teachers of the subject. I say this as one who has experienced the subject from all of these vantage points. I am a retired scientist (materials), but I still retain an interest in many scientific subjects, but now from a more general viewpoint. I have studied thermodynamics both as an undergraduate and graduate student, I have used it professionally, and even used it in a graduate course that I taught. I therefore think that I can make this wholehearted recommendation from a reasonable vantage point, or more accurately vantage points.
Professor Atkins begins with the zeroth law (and why this is not the first law) and a discussion of temperature. Then it is on to the first law and the concept of energy, the second law and the concept of entropy, the concept of free energy, and finally the third law and attaining absolute zero. All this material is treated in a clear manner, without the differential equations and derivations of equations that can make thermodynamics a complex subject. Instead, the reader is treated to an excellent discussion of what the laws mean and why they are so important. Even though I felt well versed in the subject I learned a lot and found a lot to think about. For instance, Professor Atkins provides the best explanation of enthalpy that I have ever come across. Most books just introduce it without going into why it was developed and where it fits into the general scheme of things, but Professor Atkins rectifies this. Likewise, for the superb explanations of the Helmholtz and Gibbs free energies, and other topics such the thermodynamic temperature scale. Professor Atkins also introduces subjects such as applications to biology and the concept of negative temperature, but these are just glimpses into these subjects.
This is not a deep difficult book, it is easy to read and focused on teaching the reader important ideas, rather than dealing with them rigorously or in depth (nor would this be possible in less than 100 pages). With this book being only 100-pages long, and with a focus on concepts, there is little in the way of problem solving and the development of the myriad of thermodynamic equations that have been developed to solve engine and chemical problems. As such, this book is not a substitute for a thermodynamics text, rather it is a great adjunct to one.
I can think of no better source of information on the laws of thermodynamics, either as adjunct to a more standard text, or as a standalone book for someone who just wants to know what thermodynamics is all about, but does want to delve into the subject as deeply as one would in a complete college text.