Wendy D. Leborgne and Marci Rosenberg have produced a book that is well researched, carefully crafted, and meaningfully put together. Their love of teaching, sharing with others, and application of science is evident throughout the piece. Highlights of the book include the brilliant bibliography (which will act as a potent resource for the avid reader of vocology), their even-handed discussion of approaches to breathing instruction, their attention to phonotrauma and health questions (stemming from their SLP backgrounds), a crisp history of vocal pedagogy, and their intention to present research on belting in as complete a manner as possible, giving attention to several of the key players in CCM research over the past few decades.
One of the books principal organizational features is the regular presentation of other author's research. I find this to be a double edged sword. On one level, citing copious studies from the field of voice research brings a sense of validity to the document, and offers the reader a trove of sources to mine in their search for more information. On another level, however, by relying so much on other people's data, Leborgne and Rosenberg suffer under a need to prove the data's validity. In a community where the research process itself is relatively new, and where a significant amount of the data cited comes from observational studies that rely on opinions from a very small representation of the field, this burden seems to weigh the book down. Whereas it does show the reader that regular research is taking place in the CCM voice community, it also reveals that much of the current research simply states in data points what has already been understood as general consensus. Until more revealing data begins to appear (and/or be utilized) across the board, it would seem that an author's best tools rest in defining clearly what they understand to be predictable, measurable, and repeatable information, and to provide readers with tools to achieve an understanding of this knowledge in theory and practice. As with my comments on “So You Want To Sing Rock 'N' Roll” by Matthew Edwards, I am still eager for the CCM community find more applicable language for the head/chest metaphor complex, and to develop a working understanding of vocal acoustics based in recent scientific developments. It’s hard to place these challenges at the feet of any one individual, since the research itself helps to create the confusion of information. This book will serve as an important tool in the ongoing exploration for definition and clarity.