One of the things I already love about this book is the shopping list - the author has done a very good job of providing full-color images of the components I need to buy (or dig out of my workshop's nooks). He goes one step further and even provides parts numbers (such as the Radio Shack catalog item number) to help you track down things.
Chapter 1 starts out by covering some of the basic tools you'll be using throughout the book as well as some of the very basic components you need to buy to perform the first 5 experiments in the book.
I have all the ch1 tools already - simple stuff, really. Pliers, multimeter, etc. And when the author recommends NOT using a autoranging meter, take his advice... I have both an autoranging one (very fancy, slightly more expensive) and a non-autoranging. The non-autoranging ones works very fast, just as he describes. I couldn't believe how annoying it became to wait for the autoranging meter to provide a reading.
Now, when it came to the components, I got in my truck and drove a few minutes down the road to my local Radio Shack (or The Shack, as they're now referring to themselves). I took my book with me and one of the employees helped me assemble the little bundle of resistors, potentiometers, battery holders, LEDs, fuses, and gator clips. Spent less than $15.00 on this first collection. (This doesn't include the cost of batteries, which I have plenty of at home.)
UPDATE: I had to go back and check, but the total cost of components was actually $22.00 but the Radio Shack guy gave me a nice discount on a few of the items because he was interested in the book, this blog, and my results. This reminds me that I need to go back and thank him and give him the URL!
Took everything home, unpacked it all in my electronics toolchest (see pics) and am ready to go with Experiment 1 through 5...
Note: I was not able to obtain the exact type of potentiometer described in the book - instead of a 2K ohm, I had to purchase a 5K ohm linear (0.5 watt) but I believe it should be an okay substitute. Radio Shack part # 271-1714