I think the cover of this book represents the book accurately: at first, you see a stern, wizened Kalu Rinpoche staring at you; the book, too, seems like a dry, dogmatic text expounding on things you may have read before. But the picture also captures Kalu Rinpoche's immeasurable awareness, the clarity of gaze and of his mind. And so the book, too, has such an immense scope, with such lucid explanations and discussions, that you will continually return to this book and find your previous understanding of the text was limited. This isn't a book for beginners, because it is not "fluffy" in any way. But it is an inspiring read, and fascinating, which sets it apart from so many other books on Tibetan Buddhism.
This is a really sweet book. It is a compilation of mostly lectures and notes from Kalu Rinpoche's teachings. Many times during the first read-through, I honestly felt as though this master was in the room, speaking the words on the page directly to me - evidence of the truthfulness in his words. The format of the book is such that each chapter builds upon the last, going from some very fundamental teachings (examining our situation) through the refuge vow, and all the way up to the esoteric mahamudra teachings. There is also a chapter on the challenges of dharma practice. Appended is an actual visualization practice, ("sadhana" in sanskrit) of the tantric deity of compassion, along with instructions. Among my own books, this is one I keep on the "reference" shelf.