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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Richard E. Sturm, MD, MPH (Northern Illinois Medical Center)
Description: This new book provides a basic introduction to the issues of drinking water quality and its potential contaminants from a public health perspective.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide an introduction to the common potential contaminants of drinking water and methods to prevent contamination. Health effects of various contaminants are discussed, including bacterial, viral, and parasitic diseases, lead, fluoride, nitrate, pesticides, and radiation. Surface, well, and bottled water are all discussed.
Audience: The book is targeted toward beginning students of water quality and average citizens who desire an introduction to these issues. The author is very credible in his field and provides an interesting, readable review of the subjects.
Features: More illustrations would be appreciated. The tables are helpful and the references are current.
Assessment: This book is a very useful introduction to the issues and problems of drinking water quality. It is a good antidote to the many nonscientific myths promoted about this subject in the advertising community and lay press. Conversely, some readers may find their paranoia level increasing about the many evils potentially lurking in the water supply, whereas there is not always an easy practical answer to their fears. Still, it is better to be informed in order to judge the issues as rationally as possible. This book helps the beginning student of drinking water quality to see an overview of the issues and to guide the reader to other references for advanced study.