This book is by far the best on M&A. To understand what makes this book the best, it is necessary to understand what a comprehensive book on M&A should have and how other books on the market stack up on required content:
1) A discussion of the legal framework in M&A
2) The Strategic case for M&A - Why M&A as opposed to Organic growth strategies
3) The importance of Due Diligence - Why, What, How
4) Synergies - Types, estimation
5) Valuation for M&A - DCF, Multiples, Break-up, LBO, etc.
6) Accounting (Investor Perception) issues - Accretion, Dilution
7) Structuring the Transaction - Cash vs. Stock, Earnouts, Taxation issues
8) Pitfalls and how to avoid them - Overpayment, Thinking like an investor, etc.
This is the only one on the market that does justice to all topics. Other books on the market have an exclusive focus on one or two issues. For instance, Arzac's book is the most comprehensive valuation guide available but is weak on issues like due diligence. Gaughan's book has all the legal procedures and forms that one would need to know about but is has next to nothing on valuation. Marren's book is outdated and full of spreadsheets with almost next to nothing on other topics. DePamphilis' book is weak on valuation but covers many of the other topics. Books by Reed & Lajoux cover Structuring, Taxation, Due Diligence in separate volumes and in that sense they are discontinuous.
This book puts all topics together and provides a very good treatment of each. The book may not be the best for Valuation alone or for Structuring alone but it is a great one-point reference on all topics. It has very good bibliography and those who want to delve deeper can always pick up the specialized books.
For some reason, however, I never got the CD with my purchase and therefore, please check before you buy.