Cryptography is a difficult topic, but many people are interested in keeping their email communications private. Where can a "moderately skilled geek" find a good introduction that will teach them the practical skills? PGP & GPG: Email for the Practical Paranoid claims it can help. Quantum Skyline from our own Dev Hardware forums reviews the book.
As with software reviews, I find book reviews difficult to do. Depending on the target of the book, I sometimes have a difficult time trying to put myself into a mindset that is required for understanding certain concepts, or explaining to myself why things are the way they are. PGP & GPG: Email for the Practical Paranoid by Michael W. Lucas is a book which, according to the back cover, is aimed at "moderately skilled geeks who are unfamiliar with public-key cryptography but who want to protect their communications on the cheap." This is an aspect of the book which I will touch on a few times, and it will be apparent as to why later in the review.
In the interests of full disclosure, I have more than a cursory interest in computer and Internet security, and I am familiar with the applications of cryptography to ensure privacy. I personally think that the use of public-key cryptography is a must when there are certain requirements that are dictated by the situation, and I worry that novices look at cryptography and cryptographic tools as a magic bullet that solves all of one's problems in this area. Because this book is aimed at those who wish to help with securing their online communications, I was interested in seeing how this kind of information is presented to novices.