The Portable Chemist’s Consultant

The Portable Chemist’s Consultant

Author: ChemViews

“The Portable Chemist’s Consultant by Yoshihiro Ishihara, Ana Montero and Phil S. Baran is a unique entity for the organic chemist’s virtual bookshelf”, write Robert Webster, Henrik Teller, Thomas Krämer, Bayer Pharma AG, Global Drug Discovery, Wuppertal, Germany, in their book review.

They appreciate that the interactive surface with embedded links and videos of Phil Baran lecturing his heterocyclic chemistry course at the Scripps Research Institute, as well as free updates in the form of new chapters and additional content, clearly distinguishes this work from conventional books and makes it to a “living document”.

The book is divided into two parts: The first describes the reactivity and synthesis of selected heteroaromatic systems; the second is devoted to troubleshooting problems frequently encountered by synthetic chemists, designed to act as a virtual consultant.
The range of heterocycles described is currently limited to pyridines, pyrroles and indoles, including an additional short section on azaindoles made available in a recent update. However, Webster, Teller, and Krämer think that the “depth of information provided on each topic is significant and of high pedagogical value. The content is presented logically, briefly summarizing the general properties of the heterocycle before diving into methods for its functionalization.”

The title The Portable Chemist’s Consultant might suggest a very broad target readership. Webster, Teller, and Krämer see synthetic organic chemists with a strong interest in heterocyclic chemistry as the main readers.

One point of criticism is that currently the book is only available for the iPad. But the referees summarize that The Portable Chemist’s Consultant “offers exceptional value for the price, and this well presented and intuitively operated resource has no comparable equivalent in the literature”.

The Portable Chemists Consultant – A Survival Guide for Discovery
, Process and Radiolabeling,
By Yoshihiro Ishihara, Ana Montero and Phil S. Baran,
Apple Publishing Group, New York,
2013. 579 pp., iBook,
$ 39.99

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