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on 12 February 2004
A.P French is the author of several textbooks, Vibrations and Waves being his most popular, and quite rightly so.
Vibrations and waves has a diverse coverage of vibrational meachnics, and includes all the necessary derivations using plain, well explained English. It explains complex notation and LCR circuits particularly well, and forms the basis of many undergraduate Physics courses. I would definitely recommend it to any taking a course in vibrational mechanics.
However on the down side, the Waves section of this book comprises of only two chapters and as such isn't what you are looking for if you are trying to find a good textbook on Optics.
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on 28 September 2013
A. P. French is a real Teacher, with a capital "T".
This book is part of the MIT Introductory Physics series that has three other titles by the same outstanding author: "Newtonian Mechanics", "Special Relativity" and "An Introduction to Quantum Physics" (coauthored with E. F. Taylor, yes the Taylor of Wheeler and Taylor's "Spacetime Physics"). A set of books that combine clarity of exposition with historical notes on the development of physics.

One might be put off by the fact this book is more than forty years old. Don't! This is a little gem of clarity and synthesis that stood the test of time. It actually goes to the roots of the physical principles of the oscillatory motion and does not give anything for granted. Yes, the main emphasis is on the oscillations of mechanical systems, but this is not necessarily a con. As a matter of fact, it helps the reader to develop a more intuitive view of the phenomena described while they can still be translated into other domain's by means of physical analogies.
This book is a must have.

One note on the publisher: be warned that the latest paperback editions by Norton look like xeroxes of the original book: the pictures with the gray background show bands and dithering as if they had been scanned at very low resolution with a cheap scanner. If you can, find a used copy of the old hardbound edition. The 'old days' quality is much much better than today's standard.
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on 5 August 2013
8123909144 Lists as 2003 CBS publication. This is a 2003 reprint of the 1987 Indian edition which is actually a reprint of the 1971 MIT edition. Usual flimsy paper, some of the diagrams and images are difficult to read - probably quite important in this work. A couple of pages of our copy are covered in inky fingerprints and pages are already loosening ['perfect binding'] minutes after opening the package.
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on 13 March 2014
The book itself is ok, but takes time to read to gain any useful information unlike a quick textbook, it is well written however it is smudged on many pages and some of the ink has left some sentences hard to read.
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on 8 June 2016
A concise book meant for early undergraduates - no mathematics beyond basic calculus is assumed, all the derivations are clearly shown. Especially good is a thorough discussion of the complex numbers and their utilisation in the harmonic oscillator (and related) problems.
A great thing is including a lot of pictures of experiments exhibiting the phenomena being discussed (if only to make one look them up on youtube).
The book also includes a short (but great) section on Fourier Analysis - not a thorough treatment, but being familiar with this physical interpretation of FA (modes of a vibrating string) proved useful when I started a FA course later.
A wealth of exercises with solutions is included.
Also, the Indian copy is really bad - the pages are so thin the ink on the other side is visible. This is a shame as the pictures are sometimes almost undecipherable.
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on 19 April 2015
Great book
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