This second edition of an academic bestseller provides an exemplary overview of semiotics including background information and an excellent breakdown of terms used, whilst still providing an indepth study: so its not just 'The Basics'. While many academic books on semiotics are filled with incomprehensible jargon this one is clearly written with the student in mind and complimented my undergraduate study no end.
Assuming no prior knowledge the book defines the study of semiotics, models of the sign, structures, and the interaction between signs in an accessible and clear manner. This book is ideal for dipping into to supplement knowledge or to form extremely solid foundations for further excursions into semiotics. Of particular help is the glossary (which I've used far from a semiotic context), and Chapter 7: 'Prospect and Retrospect', which is excellent for generating thought around the topic.
As well as conveying extremely complicated concepts clearly and concisely the book is structured to compliment progressive learning: meaning that for most students the information they seek is clearly labelled (so you don't have to read the entire book when you write that last minute paper you `forgot' about).
This book is indispensable to many students of media and communications, an excellent buy, well structured, and insightful.