This is a book by a good writer who has a remarkable amount of specialized knowledge. His other books- on survival, for instance- display an encyclopedic knowledge of things which will help keep you alive in trying circumstances. This book is flawed by two problems; one is the misleading hype of the publisher (this is not, as the subtitle suggests, "A complete guide to unarmed fighting techniques"); it is also flawed by the difficulty the author had in deciding what to teach and what to withhold because it was too dangerous to teach a civilian population. If the book had been subtitled "a basic guide to self-defense", it would have lived up to it's title. And if the author had been able to decide what level of damage was "okay" for what level of threat, it would have been a better book. While he withholds the "dangerous" techniques, he suggests fingers to eyes as a solution to "unwelcome attentions" when a man puts an around her shoulder in a bar. If that's not dangerous, I misunderstand the effect of fingers thrust into the eyes with the hips rotated for more power. The publisher should go to Mr. Wiseman as ask him to write a different book, which actually teaches the syllabus with which he is familiar. Since Applegate has published, and reprints of the hand-to-hand combat manuals of the army and marines are easily available, Mr. Wiseman should not feel inhibited about sharing his vast knowledge because the techniques are too dangerous or violent. In general, this book is a good basic self-defense book if the reader has the sense to realize that the eye-gouges should be restricted to situations of extreme provocation. If a reader wants to review the spectrum of military self-defense, the reader will be better served with the reprints of the Applegate or Fairbairn books, or reprints of Army Field Manual 21-150, or the Marine hand-to-hand book. I hope Mr. Wiseman writes another book which fully sets out his knowledge and extraordinary practical experience. I would happily buy it.
This is the perfect book to prime yourself for self defense. Understand that one does not need a thousand techniques to protect oneself. In fact to be and feel safe one only needs to be aware and cautious of their surroundings, and have the mastery of a few techniques. In this book the author presents a simple effective way to defend oneself from just about every situation they can get in. Defiantly a good read and a nice addition to my library.