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Book Review Quantum Mechanics in Chemistry. By M. W. Hanna

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ganic chemists who, without much previous knowledge, wish
to learn from the beginning about conformational analysis.
Two of the eight chapters are devoted to a short general
introduction to stereochemistry, four treat in detail the
conformations of alicyclic and one each the conformations
of heterocyclic and aliphatic compounds.
The numerous references (some even up to 1964) will help
those who wish to form their own opinion about this field,
which is of the utmost importance in many areas of organic
V. Prelog
[NB 489 a IE]
good idea to try an essentially non-mathematical treatment
it does not seem possible to follow this idea to the end.
Reference to “reducible” and “irreducible representation” is
avoided as long as possible; therefore arguments in which
these terms are nevertheless needed are not very convincing.
A reader who is not interested in mathematics and in understanding symmetry thoroughly, but who rather wants to get
an idea of how group theory can be used in practice, will
probably appreciate this book more than others on the same
W .Kutzelnigg
W B 491 IE]
Fundamentals of Carhanion Chemistry. By D . J . Cram. Organic Chemistry - A Series of Monographs. Edited by
A . T. Blomquist. Vol. 4. Academic Press. New York-London 1965. 1st edit., viii + 289 pp., numerous figs. and
tables, bound, $9.50.
In spite of the apparent antipodal relation between carbanions and carbonium ions, carbanion chemistry is much less
well defined and is much younger than carbonium ion chemistry as a field of work in its own right within organic chemistry. To carbanion chemistry belong molecules whose negative charge lies mainly or wholly on carbon. It includes therefore above all the chemistry of organic derivatives of the alkali metals, and extension of the acid-base concept to other
carbon acids than the classical “active methylene compounds”. Since there is n o comprehensive treatment of this
heterogeneous, rapidly developing field, one is eager to turn
to Cram’s book.
The critical survey of the thermodynamic and kinetic acidity
of carbon acids given in the first section is so good that it
alone would justify purchase of this book. A discussion of the
structure and stability of carbanions is followed by three
chapters on the stereochemistry of carbanions and electrophilic substitution reactions, which make up half of the book.
Their center of interest is the author’s own fundamental
work in this field. The conclusion is a racify written, brief
summary of molecular rearrangements that proceed by way
of carbanions.
Perusal of this monograph is strongly recommended t o all
who are interested in reaction mechanism. The author’s repute is guarantee f o r a competent and clear treatment of the
material. However, the book has some regrettable gaps. Important papers o n the stereochemistry of simple carbanions
are omitted and there is no mention of, for instance, the
class of high acidic hydrocarbons or ofradical ions. Work o n
organic compounds of the alkali metals, which is of such
supreme importance to carbanion chemistry, is mentioned
only in passing, showing the almost complete failure to
evaluate, in particular, the German literature, and without
that a standard textbook of carbanion chemistry would be
unthinkable. This does not diminish the value of Cram’s
book; it is indeed questionable whether a comprehensive
text o n the whole topic can yet (or still) be written. The reader
lays down the book with the wish that an equally good one
on other aspects of carbanion chemistry were available.
[NB 489 b IE]
G. Kobrich
Quantum Mechanics in Chemistry. By M. W. Hanna. W . A.
Benjamin, Inc., New York-Amsterdam 1965. 1st Edit.,
253 pp.. numerous figs. and tables, paperback $4.35,
bound $7.70.
Symmetry in Chemistry. By H. H. Jaffe‘and M. Orchin. John
Wilev & Sons. Inc., New York-London-Sydney 1965. 1st‘
edit., x + 191 pp., several figs. and tables, bound, E2.2.-,
paperback E1.lO.- (about $6.- and $4.20).
A few years ago there was a dearth of textbooks on group
theory that presented this field in a way suitable for chemists
or molecular physicists, but today there is a large choice of
such books. Joffe‘ and Orchin’s monograph is distinguished by
the simplicity of the presentation
After a lightly philosophical introduction on “Symmetry and
Beauty” the authors introduce the terms symmetry operations, multiplication of symmetry operations, symmetry
groups, and symmetry species clearly and convincingly with
the aid of examples familiar to chemists. Although it is a
This book is intended for undergraduates.
Mathematical methods and concepts that go beyond school
mathematics but are essential for an understanding of
modern theoretical chemistry are presented clearly and intelligibly in an introductory chapter. The fundamentals of
quantum theory are introduced axiomatically. It is didactically wise to treat rotations and vibrations of molecules as
the first applications of quantum mechanics, and only
thereafter the electronic structure of atoms and the theory
of the chemical bond. Therefore the book can be recommended also - and in fact particularly - as an introduction
to molecular spectroscopy.
The author is concerned mainly with defining the fundamental concepts precisely and in an understandable way. The
mathematical formulations are compact and conform to
international usage. The readen is not embarassed with
lengthy derivations. The well chosen problems allow him to
find the easier proofs himself, whereas for more complicated
ones he finds references to more detailed monographs. Each
chapter has a summary.
One should not expect from a textbook mtended for beginners
a survey of quantum chemistry. In fact it offers the minimum
of what a modern chemist shouId know about quantum
mechamcs. It is recommended particularly for those young
students who d o not mind some mathematics and are ready,
not just to read a textbook, but to study it carefully.
The printing is agreeable and clearly arranged. The only
error the reviewer found is the value of 1.37 A instead of
1.06 A for the equilibrium distance in H:.
W. Kutzelnigg
[NB 492 IE]
Chemistry of the Iron Group Metallocenes: Ferrocene, Ruthenocene, Osmocene. Part I. By M. Rosenblum. Interscience Publishers, New York,London-Sydney 1965. 1st
Edit., xv + 241 pp., numerous figs., bound, f4.15.-.
The development of the chemistry of organometallic compounds during the last ten years justifies the metaphor “explosive”. Consequently an attempt at a new edition of a book
such as E. Krause and A . von Grosse’s “Die Chemie der metallorganischen Verbindungen”, which contained all the metallorganic compounds known in 1937, would appear utopian. Interscience Publishers have now begun t o cover the
most important sections of organometallic chemistry by a
series of monographs edited by D . Seyferth. The first of
these is devoted to the metallocenes of the iron group,
with particular emphasis on ferrocene as the prototype of dicyclopentadienylmetal compounds.
The first three chapters of present volume deal with the
preparation, electronic structure, bonding, and physical
properties of metallocenes. The bonding, which has in the
past been the subject of controversial discussion, is purposely
not treated in full detail; only the important results based on
MO treatment are presented. Chapters 4, 5 , and 6 deal with
the acyl-, alkyl-, and aryl-metallocenes that were obtained by
replacement of ring protons, their preparation illustrating
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit.
Vol. 5 (1966) 1 No. 8
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