Part 1 covers chapters 1 to 6, or about one semester of college work: Part 2 covers the second semester, and Part 3 is for use in the second year. After Part 3 the student can read ungraded texts with the use of a dictionary.
A number of schools experienced dramatic increases in enrollment after adopting this book. Lipson's book was the first to use the Jakobson one-stem verb system in teaching Russian; it also introduced many other concepts to Russian pedagogy, and its ideas have been the stimulus for a number of other books (those published by Slavica include Townsend's Russian Word-Formation, M. Levin's Russian Declension and Conjugation, and Gribble's Russian Root List.) Lipson's book not only presents Russian grammar in a new and more accurate way -- it also motivates the students to learn by providing them with imaginative and clever situations and texts that overcome the students' self-consciousness and inspire them to speak. The book is full of a delightful humor that most students find an exciting change from the usual dry textbook style. Both American and Soviet life styles, values, and traditions are satirized. The Teacher's Manual by Molinsky is by far the most complete and thorough teacher's manual for any Russian textbook, and it makes using the Lipson book easy for beginners as well as experienced teachers, since it gives step-by-step instructions for each class hour, with sample lesson plans, assignments for homework, sample tests, and explanations of why the book is constructed the way it is and what each section accomplishes. The Teacher's Manual is particularly useful for schools where much of the teaching is done by graduate students, since it gives them the day-to-day guidance that they need when starting their teaching careers.
Audio materials that accompany the language-learning text are available through Boston University's Geddes Language Center here: http://www.bu.edu/geddes
"It is unfortunate that Lipson chose to employ humor throughout the book for it limits the appeal of what is otherwise a well-organized and clear presentation of Russian grammar and morphology." (MLJ) (Note from the publisher: we agree that people without a sense of humor should not use this book, zhnor, probably, should they be asked to review itch, but most students do seem to have a sense of humor and like a textbook that has some. Being dry is not an obligatory quality of a textbook.)