This introductory text is a sound, basic overview. It is well structured, and easily accessible both to lay persons, who may have little knowledge or experience of social gerontology, as well as to students who may seek to explore and develop insights further, within what is a relatively recent intellectual tradition. Christine Atwell, School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, UK Ageing Societies: A Comparative Introduction provides a comprehensive introduction to the field of ageing, highlighting the inter-connections between health, economic and social aspects of ageing. Virpi Timonen's book is written in a lively and accessible style and will be particularly valuable for undergraduates and students on professional courses. Sara Arber, University of Surrey, UK Timonen does an excellent job of explaining both very basic concepts and complex aspects, thus making this book accessible to a broad range of readers. There are only very few exceptions where this is neglected. Overall, therefore, this is a very balanced approach to an important and vast subject area that manages to balance a social critique that calls us to address and adapt ageing socially, politically and economically, with an optimistic view of the achievements and opportunities that these developments bring with them. VANESSA BECKUniversity of Leicester It is very refreshing to read a book which achieves the delicate balance between celebrating age and ageing without losing the message that there are distinct biological, psychological and social challenges for older people in all societies ...The volume is well written in a jargon-free, lively and accessible style, and any necessary acronyms and technical vocabulary are fully explained to the reader ...I have no doubt that the book will be of interest to both undergraduate and postgraduate students in fields such as gerontology, social policy, social work, sociology, nursing, as well as professionals and practitioners who work with older people. Timonen provides a clear, well-organised, wide-ranging and comprehensible introduction to the complex and highly topical subject of ageing and its global and social diversity. KATE DAVIDSONCentre for Research on Ageing and Gender,University of Surrey, Guildford, UK What is ageing? Why is ageing important and how can we understand it better? How does policy and practice in relation to ageing populations differ across the globe?This book aims to convince readers that ageing is not boring, threatening or depressing, but that it has enormous relevance for the young and the old alike. Virpi Timonen provides an engaging introduction to the central social, economic and political aspects and impacts of ageing and makes the case for the importance of analysing ageing from a number of different perspectives. Using comparative international data, the author provides a detailed description of the process of population ageing, including increasing longevity, changes in fertility and variations in the health status of older populations. In addition, the book sets out the social context and background of ageing, discussing related and relevant developments, such as: Changes in family structures Patterns of household formation Women's labour market participation Income and work in older age Health and social care of older people Attitudes towards older peopleThe book highlights the nature of ageing as an individual and societal experience. The author succeeds in arguing that whilst ageing is becoming an increasingly widespread and global experience, age-related policies, practices and consequently the actual lived experience of ageing differ greatly between countries and regions of the world. Ageing Societies is of interest and use to both undergraduate and postgraduate students in fields such as gerontology, social policy, social work, sociology, nursing, as well as professionals and practitioners in the eldercare sectors and general readers from a wide variety of backgrounds who wish to gain an understanding of the complex and highly topical subject of ageing.