Introduction to polymers (3rd edition)
Robert Young and Peter Lovell
CRC Press
2011 | 688pp | £37.99 (PB)
ISBN 9780849339295
Reviewed by Lian Hutchings

The publication of the third edition of Introduction to polymers is an extremely timely, updated version of the second edition which was published some twenty years ago. This new edition has been expanded to reflect the extensive advances in polymer science in recent decades. It includes entirely new sections introducing the fundamentals of controlled radical polymerisation mechanisms, dendrimers and hyperbranched polymers and supramolecular polymerisation.

While discussion of these now established areas of polymer science is necessarily brief, useful recommendations for further reading are included. An extended chapter on block copolymer synthesis is also a useful addition, as is an expansion of the chapter on polymer characterisation to include techniques such as field flow fractionation and MALDI mass spectrometry. Although these and a number of other new concepts have been introduced, at its heart this book remains an excellent introduction to a broad range of the essential fundamental concepts of polymer science.

The second edition of this book is currently the recommended text for a second year undergraduate lecture course I deliver. In future I will recommend the third edition for both this course and a fourth year (Masters) lecture course on advanced polymer synthesis. Moreover, not only have Young and Lovell produced an excellent text (again) for supporting undergraduate teaching, this book is also a superb entry level text for postgraduates students with limited experience of polymers.

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