It seems almost churlish to criticise Albert Adria's Natura. It's filled with beautiful and breathtaking pictures, huge double spreads showing off the cutting edge of dessert design. Oodles of new techniques and old ones polished up to insane new levels (some of the things they do with gelatin here are just mind-boggling). Even though most of the book is beyond me, it's given me lots of new ideas already, and I've only had it two days. There is, however, a slight annoyance. While the book is gorgeous, it comes at the expense of practicality. None of the desserts featured in the book have a recipe accompanying them on the page; instead there's a CD with a Flash application which contains the details (along with swoosh-y animations). You can print individual recipes out, but the program seems to use bitmapped fonts, resulting in a rather 1990s ink-jet feeling to the printout. Especially annoying when you're printing on a colour laser. I can understand that the book is supposed to be a showcase of the desserts themselves and letting them stand alone, but the Alinea book is no less beautiful whilst still containing exhaustive directions alongside their photography. There's so little information in Natura itself (aside from a scant twenty pages in the back about a few techniques) that the book is almost secondary to the CD. Which is a little disappointing considering that it's one of the most expensive books I've ever bought. Having said all that, it's not going anywhere. I just wish the physical side of it was more useful than the virtual one.