The 5 Steps to a 5: AP Physics 1 book is out. You can buy here via amazon. I've completely rewritten the text from previous Physics B version because, well, the AP Physics 1 exam is completely different. Last week in Barnes and Noble, I couldn't find any other prep books for the new exam. And I don't trust the competing companies' books, anyway.*
* I suspect they're all superior to Barry Panas's "1 Step to a 1," which offers a money-back guarantee.
I really like the approach to content in this year's book. Instead of textbook-style exposition, example problems, and practice problems, each of the content chapters intertwines exposition and examples. In the spirit of the new exams, the "examples" don't pose a particular problem to solve -- getting hung up on the exact correct answer rather than the process and explanation will be a particularly harmful bugaboo on this new style of exam. Rather, the examples pose situations which are fertile ground for all sorts of kinds of problems. Then, I suggest what kinds of questions could be spawned from each situation, and I show how to answer each of these questions.
The book includes a variety of practice questions in each content chapter, and a complete practice exam written directly to the AP Physics 1 learning objectives and science practices. And already I've found the first major error... that's inevitable, of course, in a first edition. Even though I worked through everything multiple times, the first time I read the published version I found the stupidicism. In the forces chapter, I ask a question about a block pulled along the ground by a string angled up 30 degrees above the horizontal. Great... except that in the solution I state that the normal force on the block is equal to its weight. Duh. Since the string force has an upward vertical component, the normal force on the block must be LESS than the block's weight. Grrr. I'll have to rewrite that one for the second edition.
Any other comments, ideas, complaints, or suggestions can go in the comments, or can be sent to me via email. Enjoy the book