Firstly, what this book is not. Although Haynes is an academic and specialises in Russia this book is not an academic history of Russia between 1917 and 2000.
The book is a political tract from a Marxist perspective, pitched at political activists who are looking for an overview and analysis of why the Russian Revolution happened, why it degenerated into dictatorship, the nature of society under Stalin's regime and why, eventually, the USSR collapsed and the nature of the society that Russia became after that collapse.
I think that it's excellent. The amount of analysis and debate that is succinctly packed into 200 pages is quite impressive. Haynes manages to get over quite difficult economic and political concepts in an easy to understand manner that assumes little or no previous understanding of the concepts or of Marxist jargon. The book is peppered with tables of stats to illustrate points - though the type used on these and on block quotes is too small. The notes and bibliography are good, enabling those interested to delve further.
The book manages to be satisfying even to those who are widely read on the topic of the Russian Revolution and it's degeneration. Personally, I found the sections analysing the collapse of the USSR most interesting, probably because I was familiar with earlier history.