Reviewers of such a book as Intro. to Post-Tonal Theory should know a bit about set-class theory before trying to discredit Straus's work. "A Reader"'s review (titled "Inaccurate") is itself blatantly wrong. Set [0,3,4,5,8,10,11], this reviewer proposes, does not yield prime form if one applies Straus's methods to it. What the reviewer doesn't seem to realize is that he has failed to apply the first rule of finding normal order, of finding the MINIMUM SPAN of a set, which Straus does tell readers to do. The aforementioned septachord must be put in normal order first with minimum span (that is, 0,1,2,7,8,9) before applying Straus's right-to-left rule. A review must be critical but such a mistaken reading must either be ignorance or willful malevolence, neither of which is appropriate here. "from the real world of music" is arguably a worse review, throwing up a veil of unnecessary "big words," to use the vernacular, to hide a critique based upon nothing. What abuses of terminology, what logical fallacies, and what errors does this reviewer refer to? And if Straus's book is "cliff notes", then what is the real version? I don't discredit these reviews from a difference of opinion on my part but rather I am disgusted by the ignorance present in these reviews.
Having said all that, is is no surpise that I firmly believe that Straus's text belongs at the top of a short list of anyone who wishes to pursue pitch class set theory. It is indeed designed as a text and as such is often times clearer and more practical than the Allen Forte original. He engages precisely the repertoire Forte set out to engage (the second Viennese school mainly) and supports his clear explanations with convincing musical examples and step-by-step analyses. The positive reviews here obviously outweight the astoundingly ignorant negative ones. As well, this book has the blessing of the majority of the music theory community behind it, and rightly so. This is a valuable book that deserves a place on any theorist's (or aspiring theorists's) shelves.