From the reviews of the second edition:
"Satisfyingly heavy and a pleasure to handle … Volume 2 of the Second Edition of this highly respected work boasts a combined weight of more than 7 Kg. Their sheer size is a testament to the quantity of information contained inside. … Each article … is organized in a standardized way that helps make the information more digestible. … The updated Manual has a place in all scientific libraries and its importance can only grow as we continue to explore and appreciate the vast prokaryotic diversity surrounding us." (Dawn Field, Microbiology Today, July, 2006)
"Volume 2: The Proteobacteria", (2004) is a work by Don J. Brenner, Noel R. Krieg, James T. Staley (Volume Editors), and George M. Garrity (Editor-in-Chief) with contributions from 339 colleagues. This volume provides descriptions of more than 2000 species in 538 genera that are assigned to the phylum Proteobacteria. This volume is subdivided into three parts. Part A, The Introductory Essays (332 pages, 76 figures, 37 tables); Part B, The Gammaproteobacteria (1203 pages, 222 figures, and 300 tables); and, Part C The Alpha-, Beta-, Delta-, and Epsilonproteobacteria (1256 pages, 512 figures, and 371 tables). This volume on the Proteobacteria culminates a four year effort by Bergey's Manual Trust and more than 150 internationally recognized authorities to provide a comprehensive view of the Proteobacteria, the largest prokaryotic phylum.At present, there are roughly 6250 named species of Bacteria, and the Proteobacteria represent the single largest phylum. It encompasses 72 families and includes descriptions of 425 genera and over 1875 named species.
The Proteobacteria also represent the most metabolically and ecologically diverse group of bacteria and contains many of the clinically relevant species that are of significance in human, animal and plant health. As a result, this volume caters to the broadest audience, and the set is an essential reference for the microbiologist. This volume is subdivided into three sub-volumes: Introductory chapters (Part A), The Gammaproteobacteria (Part B), and the Alpha-, Beta-, Delta-, and Epsilonproteobacteria (Part C). Most importantly, medically important species appear in both the B and C sub-volumes.