In this volume of the Oxford Surveys of Plant Molecular and Cell Biology a number of plant genes and proteins are discussed in thematic fashion. Apart from describing a number of case studies, the method of using antisense constructs to silence expression of particular genes is presented. The chapters on ubiquitin, thionines and glutamine synthase give a nice overview, not only of the proteins themselves and their function in the plant cells’ metabolism, but also the structure and expression of their encoding genes is presented in extensive detail. These chapters are very useful both in giving an in-depth picture of the field, and also as an example of the necessity to combine physiological, biochemical and molecular data. One drawback of the chapters dealing with photosystem II and HMW subunits is that they have been written in such a compact form, that rather than giving a review of current thinking in these areas they are more like an encyclopaedia.