Who created the first "Easter egg" in a videogame? Where does the name Atari come from? If you're like me. answers to these questions and others about the early years of gaming seem hazy. And good reason. Because a great majority of gamers weren't even born yet when Pong was the craze of the day. 

An excellent book, Phoenix (The Fall and Rise of Videogames) written and published by Leonard Herman makes it crystal clear. Herman takes you on an incredible detailed journey through EGís past starting at gamingís ancestors in the nineteenth century and up to more recent times. Herman comes across with easy to understand explainations of events throughout the book. 

Phoenix is the who, what. where. when. Why and how of videogames. It can't really be classified as a story or a reference: it's a taste of both. It isnít one of those books that you read once and throw out. I went back to it numerous times later to check out facts and figures after the initial read-through. 

The advance copy I received did not yet include three additional chapters which will cover 1992. 1993. and Multimedia in the finished edition. Iím sure these chapters will be in the valuable, information rich style that characterizes the finished ones. 

Herman is publishing the finished version in its entirety, and for $14 (this includes postage and handling) it's a steal.