This is the book by the then Cardinal Ratzinger that I had always intended to read. With the new translation of the Mass in English to be introduced in these parts in 2011, I thought it would be a good idea to read this book. It starts out a little lofty, but as the dustjacket says, if the ideas strike one as lofty, it is not because you are dim, but because the ideas and concepts themselves are lofty, or words to that effect. The second half of the book is an easier read, with various key liturgical issues address, including the offering of Holy Mass ad orientem (facing east), instead of the Mass facing the people that has become the norm since the liturgical revolution after Vatican II, location of the tabernacle, postures, including kneeling, and vestments.
The Cardinal proposes placing a crucifix on the altar in order to provide a focus for Mass, and he also addresses some of the errors of these times concerning liturgical matters as well as discussing the problems that result when the liturgy breaks down.
This book should be read by all priests and seminarians, as well as committed lay people. It might be a good idea to present this book as a gift to priests that you know, and I have already given two copies away to priests!
The book gives a good insight into the thinking of Pope Benedict and gives one hope that the coming decades will bring the genuine liturgical renewal that had been hoped for following the close of the Council.