U2: The Stories Behind the Song is a good book for anyone wanting to know more about U2. The book is very reasonably-priced, mainly due to its small size, compared to older editions. However, this is the fourth edition of the book, and compared to the previous edition, it is quite lacking. For starters, a lot of information from the previous edition is missing. Almost every song from Boy up to No Line on the Horizon is explained in detail, but a lot of the entries for older songs have been shortened, with less information that was previously available. I compared the two books side-by-side and noticed that some song entries had as much as entire paragraphs removed. Second, the layout is much less appealing. The previous edition was very colorful and full of photographs, while this edition is simply black text on white pages, with small photographs on some pages, and other pages entirely full of text. Third, there is not much new information in this edition that was not in the previous one. The only new information that was not available in the previous edition was information on the 11 songs from No Line on the Horizon, but each song is only explained for anywhere from one paragraph to one page. Entries for older songs take up anywhere from one to three pages.
As far as additional content goes, there is a section that covers B-sides, non-album songs, the Passengers album, and The Million Dollar Hotel film soundtrack, just like in the old edition. Like the rest of the book, a lot of these entries are much shorter than the previous edition, and there is no new material found here. The B-sides range from "Boy/Girl" (1979) to "Always" (2002), but there are no B-sides covered newer than that. "Electrical Storm", a single from the compilation album The Best of 1990-2000, was missing from the previous edition, and is not in this edition either. Other new songs missing include "The Saints Are Coming" and "Window in the Skies", both from the compilation album U218 Singles.
Basically, everything is this edition is lessened from the previous edition. There are less pictures and much less content. The book is much smaller, and even the title has been shortened. Previous editions were known as "Into the Heart: The Stories Behind Every Song", while this edition is simply titled "The Stories Behind Every Song". If you are looking for a great "coffee table-like" book about U2, I would stick with the old edition, U2: Into the Heart: The Stories Behind Every Song. If you already own the previous edition, I do not see a need to purchase the new edition, even you are a hardcore U2 fan like myself. It is currently still available on Amazon.com (and still in print, I believe), and while it is more expensive, it is definitely worth the price.