Reviewed by Mary Gallagher

This fat tome of cruise ship evaluations deserves it’s myriad of accolades. Steven B. Stern completely updates this guide every year to provide the most current and accurate descriptions of more than 280 cruise ships throughout the world.

I was able to research the German luxury cruise line Hapag Lloyds Europa and ports along the Black Sea in preparation for my fall trip aboard this six star vessel. The wonderful Radisson line is well covered and many barge cruises included.

You’ll find actual menus, itineraries, and on board activities plus what to do in ports. Entire chapters specifically for the tennis player and another on jogging trails from Malaysia to Paris and everywhere in between. It’s fun just to study the various port descriptions and what is recommended for sightseeing.

For the cruises I’ll be taking this year, Sterns guide is an invaluable and comprehensive resource. Brochures can be helpful but here are unbiased facts. The bock is a compact size but thick and not one you’d want to take in your luggage. I’d call it the encyclopedia of cruising

Steven Stern is Pelican, the publisher’s luxury-travel expert, having sailed on more than 750 cruise ships.