Brian Cox in his book "Why does E=MC2?" talks about "useful science" and its opposite. He politely says that people are entitled to make conjectures on any subject under the sun, but for their work to be considered scientific it must make "useful" predictions. Useful, of course, in the sense that the work predicts (d) when (a) (b) and (c) first happen.
I'm not too sure that sociology or economics or geography deserve to be termed science, which isn't to denigrate them any more than I'd denigrate the arts. On the other hand, thermodynamics and aerodynamics are clearly 'useful' in both senses of the word.
So far so black-and-white. But what of vulcanology? Is it a science or just a way of describing... after the event? Does it deserve the 'ology' or should it be relegated to an 'ography'? As for this book, does it contain numbers and equations? Does it make falsifiable predictions? (Yeah, I hear you say, 'flippin' well buy it and you'll find out!')
Even the layman can make predictions in the field of vulcanology, but here is my question: Is the signal to noise ratio higher amongst vulcanological professionals than amongst non-specialists?
To return to Brian Cox, I dunno if he has actually accomplished anything as a scientist; when he stands before some natural wonder, looks into the camera and says, "Wow, that's really amazing!" he's a mere entertainer.
Is this book entertainment or science?