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2.9 out of 5 stars8
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on 19 November 2009
First, let me say that this is by far the most comprehensive book on Solid State Physics which I have come across pitched at undergraduate level. Unfortunately, that is about the most positive thing I can say about it.

This textbook might be one of the most poorly written pieces of work I've ever come across. I found it very hard going, very confusing and many of the concepts are poorly explained. Unfortunately, it remains one of the recommended texts for many universities purely because of its comprehensive nature (and it's true, there is a lot of stuff in here).

As a reference book it's not so bad, but don't expect to learn anything from it.

The one star review which has been posted has as one of it's comments "What would you recommend?". Unfortunately, I don't have a recommendation which covers the bredth of this book, but some useful alternatives would be:

"Introduction to the physics of electrons in solids" by Tanner is very good for all the electrical content.
"Solid state physics" by Blakemore is very good for the structural content.

The real question comes in the form: "Is is better to buy two good books, or buy one bad book which says the same thing?"

If you want to learn: Yes.
If you want a reference book: No.
If you're on a tight budget: No.

But I would highly recommend buying an alternative to this book.
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on 14 March 2014
This book is good as a reference guide, I would not recommend it for learning. If you are a student that has been told ' this is the course book ' and you study near Manchester then I feel your pain. My advice would be to avoid it at all costs. Alternative I am using is Solid State Physics - Hook and Hall - Manchester series. Down side is that it does not have all of the content that Kittel contains. If you want to learn something buy a different book, if you already understand the topic buy Kittel.
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on 11 December 2014
Not sure why most authors on the topic of solid state physics feel the need to write about it in quite such a dull way. This is no exception.

However, it is certainly not the worst I have come across (maybe this isn't saying something) and does cover a good deal of things.

Some of the chapters seem to tail off and have certain gaps where a more detailed explanation might be expected (for me on my undergrad course anyway).

What concerns me though is how this book has come to command such a ridiculous pricetag - it is in no way worth more than a quarter of the current £150 being asked.
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on 2 February 2010
This new edition attempts to correct some of the failings of the previous edition.
But basically nothing but a full rewrite with a whole new perspective and manner of communication -- a new work, really -- could achieve that.
This book is a classic failure on an area that is amongst the most interesting in the physical sciences over the last 50 years.
It is also a classic example of 2 other things:-

1) How knowledgeable professors, who must be adequate when verbally communicating their own subject, can fail to explain even simple concepts in the printed medium.

2) How technical publishers continually allow a prospective author's academic/research reputation to dazzle them into publishing unclear and incoherent textbooks.

Let's hope that the present-day feasibility of self-publishing will encourage those lecturers who would - given a bit of home study leave - easily produce a better text than this sort of thing.
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on 8 May 2014
I you want to know Solid State Physics, this is the book. Your older professors will tell you that nothing beats Ashcroft and Mermin. They're lying. Quite pedagogical, and very, very extensive. As I am not in solid state physics but in particle physics, my best guess is that I will not need any book more advanced than this one for many years to come.
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on 11 July 2012
I use this as a course text to teach my undergraduate physics degree class in solid-state physics. Kittel is an excellent solid-state physics book which can be used at various levels. A basic understanding can be gained by dipping into parts of the book and a very thorough understanding can be gained from reading the whole text. The examples and questions are also very helpful. Overall, excellent.
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on 27 January 2015
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on 30 August 2006
This book is awful.

It's confused. It has many ambiguities. Very "hard" to read compared to other, much better books.

It's a waste of money.
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