I actually received this book as part of the AstroBox when I purchased my Bresser Messier 130N telescope. Philip’s produce some really good books on all aspects of astronomy and this book is no different.
Stargazing with a telescope begins by taking you through how telescopes work and the various types of telescopes available and which may be right for you. The book also contains a lot of information on the various types of mounts from various manufacturers and how they all work. There are also some great tips on what to look for when purchasing a second hand telescope and a section on how to maintain your telescope.
Stargazing with a telescope then moves onto using your telescope, it begins with setting up your viewfinder and getting its alignment correct. The book also describes each part of the telescope in turn and gives help and advice on how to make the most of your nights viewing.
Stargazing with a telescope shows you how to set up and use setting circles, and get used to use RA and Dec settings, and polar align your telescope. It also instructs you how to use the Philips Planisphere.
There is then a section on the planets and how to view the sun and about viewing nebulae and double stars.
The last major chapter is about the extras you can purchase for your telescope including eyepieces, filters, dew shields, power supplies, astrophotography and web cam use.
Finally the book has a number of sky maps depicting the sky throughout the various seasons and a list of the various nebulae and other interesting objects to observe.
At around 190 pages Stargazing with a telescope packs in so much vital information for astronomy beginners.
I actually think that every person starting astronomy should read Stargazing with a telescope. I still am, for reference as well. This book could also be read before you purchase binoculars or a telescope as there is lots of good advice about the different type of telescope and which may be right for you.
This book review is based on the 2004 edition.