It's funny how perspectives from a programmer and a beginner differ so greatly on this text. I am a very successful 30 something student at a major university. I think I am qualified to say, from a beginner's standpoint, that this book leaves much to be desired. I will retread some of the same points others have made here.
The book is intentionally vague: As beginners, students need to grasp basic programming concepys and styles. This text seems to often avoid explaining these basic concepts. The text also does not offer examples of good efficient code or practices. The teacher materials (assignments) intentionally ask for things not discussed in the chapters, The exams are designed to trick the student rather than test understanding of concepts. Forcing sheer memorization over understanding is a bad way to start learning. Example: Which of the following are properties of the Color Structure? a. R,G,B / b. ColorRed,ColorBlue,ColorRed / c. Alpha / d. All of the above - if you answered A you are correct -but Alpha is also a property of the color structure. That's not inportant. A is the answer.
Examples sometimes don't work: Code examples in Chapter 6 fail to work. What's worse, the publisher's web site does not correct this issue. If you plan on drawing text onto a form prepare to do some reading on the outside in order to accomplish this task.
Not easy to read: As mentioned, this text is full of run on sentenses, disjointed and technical. Technical is good, but some plain english explanations would help the BEGINNER to grasp concepts.
Class revolt over the text: As mentioned, students in my class have openly criticized this text. (They actually begged the teacher to just code in VB and explain what's happening over usung the text) These complaints were brought to not only to the teacher, but to the head of the department.
If you are teacher and want to teach VB to beginners, look at some of the other suggestions posted here. This text makes learning VB a chore. People want to be challenged, but also have fun learning something as powerful and simple as VB.NET.