So, you want to be a Web designer? According to the author, Web Design for Dummies "gives you the know-how it takes to walk the walk and talk the talk". It's intended for people who are serious about getting into site design as a career, rather than just knocking out a family home page, and provides information on clients, rates, portfolios and the like.
The intention is not to turn you into a hardcoding HTML propeller-head, and the author even says that a knowledge of HTML is not necessary. However, three chapters are given over to the stuff, giving you a grasp of the principles and limitations so that your brilliant designs are achievable.
Broadly, the five parts of the book cover planning procedures, graphics, user interface, the "ghastly but essential techno-babble", and a summarised reference. Like all the 'Dummies' books, it takes the approach that the subject is not rocket science, and demystifies the process of making great Web sites.
Throughout the book, there are references to further, detailed training on specific topics/software from something called eHandsOn.com - an online training company founded, coincidentally, by the book's author. This could easily be perceived as shameless spruiking for her product, and does raise the question of objectivity.
The enclosed CD comes with free trials of Web design and graphics software, like Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Flash, Photoshop and Inspiration. It gives you a chance to try out the packages without forking over big bucks for them. And, conveniently, there are four free training samples from eHandsOn.com - so you can try that out, too, before dusting off your credit card and signing up for the lessons.