What drew me to Charles Platt's Make: Electronics wasn't the title, the cover, or the reviews. It was a page from the book I saw in a Google Images search that shows a dude licking a 9V battery, alongside the suggestion that we too should lick some 9V batteries and taste their power! And also this description of the manual that endeavors to teach its readers the fundamentals of electronics: "Burn things out, mess things up--that's how you learn."
Make: Electronics encourages a hands-on approach to north-of-the-neck growth. Experiments and projects begin on page 1 and continue for 300 more, with what-is and how-to enlightenment ranging from switching and integrated circuits to simple alarms and programmable microcontrollers. Platt's method is to act first and think later; you'll start with building the electronics (and sometimes breaking them), and then you'll learn the science and theory behind them. Make's instructions are step-by-step and accompanied by over 500 full-color photographs and illustrations.
Make: Electronics projects include creating an intrusion alarm, holiday lights, wearable electronic jewelry, audio processors, a reflex tester, a combination lock, and an autonomous robot cart that can sense its environment and avoid obstacles.