An excellent start,
This review is from: Mandolin For Dummies (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
IN my experience Dummies guides are either really good or quite terrible. This is one of the good ones!
It starts with the absolute basics and takes you through to a fairly high level of playing, taking in styles such as folk, blues, bluegrass,classical and jazz along the way. Tunes are given in standard music notation and also tablature, so the book is useful even if you don't know anything about music already. Tablature is basically a system of telling you where to put your fingers on the frets using a diagram of the fingerboard. It is a sort of idiots way of reading music without the traditional notation. Quite apt for Dummies really. There are some tunes to download which you can play along with.
There is a great chapter on ten players you should listen to and a whole chapter given over to the playing of David "Dawg" Grisman, mandolinist pal of the Grateful Dead and a highly regarded fusion player. Add in chapters on types of mandolin, buying advice, how to change strings and you have a pretty good package for the keen beginner to pick up.
Of course the best thing is to have a real live mandolin teacher to get you started off, but if you don't have one of those this book should keep you right.