First let me say that this is an excellent book clearly written by someone with a deep knowlege of their subject and I would definately recommend it to anyone trying to get to grips with CG Rendering in general and Mental Ray rendering in particular.
The one caveat I would add is to say that this is a very technical book that goes deeply into the math behind the technology, in a way that I personaly did not find helpful since my ability to read equations is non existant.
Don't let this put you off too much though, as there is a huge amount of valuable information in this book that is well worth the price.
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I already had a solid understanding of Mental ray but this book supplied me with a greater picture and understanding of the inner workings of Mental Ray, something i would not have been able to achieve with any number of interactive tutorials. Mental Ray is explained from the base up covering several advanced topics.
Buy this book if you'd like to know almost everything about mental ray there is to know....