Relatively speaking, homeopathy is one of the more recent developments in alternative health care. It is based upon a controversial theory of "similars" developed in the 18th century by the German physician Samuel Hahnemann. Hahnemann believed that by administering highly diluted tinctures derived from herbs, minerals, and other ingredients, the body would heal itself of diseases that had symptoms similar to those caused by the medicines. The Consumer's Guide to Homeopathy, written by the author of Homeopathic Medicine for Children and Infants (LJ 7/92) and other books on the subject, is a comprehensive study of homeopathy. The emphasis here is on research, with much of the book given to discussions of scientific studies and professional procedures, including a detailed appendix of homeopathic resources, books, software, organizations, etc. Although there is information on the use of homeopathic medicines in the treatment of specific conditions, the book's format is geared toward consumer education. It answers the most common questions asked about homeopathic medicine, including myths and misconceptions, describes what to look for when choosing a homeopathic physician, and provides readers with information necessary to make intelligent choices about their treatment. Conversely, Hammond's The Complete Family Guide to Homeopathy is a richly illustrated, visually stunning encyclopedia in the DK style. The information is presented in a very accessible way, perfect for anyone interested in trying the medications for themselves. The emphasis here is on home treatment, with fully half of the book dedicated to pictorial descriptions of the remedies used, as well as 100 pages of symptoms charts used to determine which remedies may be most beneficial. For those readers interested in a do-it-yourself guide or for libraries looking for a one-volume purchase on homeopathy, Hammond's book is a must. Ullman's title, though also recommended, may better serve larger or more specialized collections.Jeffery Ingram, Newport P.L., Ore.