When I started reading this book, I immediately skipped part I, because it's a pure mathematical part. 30 Pages wasted for me, but probably because I have the basic mathematical knowledge.
Part II gets to the point. You set up a 3D environment with all the tricks basically available. After having done part II, you'll be able to set up a scene with lighting and texturing, and stencilling (shadows and mirrors)
Part III goes into the additions of Microsoft in DirectX. These were not that interesting for me, because I'm a low-level kinda guy but I got a lot of tips from that chapter on how to improve things.
Part IV then gives you all the information you need about shaders. It even shows you how the built in shaders of rendering works by showing you examples of where you program to do the same! That's really interesting if you wish to understand more about the pipeline!
Short: this book helped me a LOT to make me set up a great foundation of a 3D engine. Now I'm looking for a book that helps me with effects and stuff like that. This book helped me create a game with basic graphics (which means, the graphics are great (I mean, detail's ok, framerate's ok, base is ok), but the lack of effects make the graphics look old) (http://www.tears-of-betrayal.com if you wish to see what this book made me create)
Really! Buy this book and with the right spirit, you'll do it!