I bought it and am halfway through it and can recommand it ! My use of Max is not primarily focused on synthesis but it helps me understanding some crucial points about acoustic and synthesis theories.
This book is great for popular music mixing technique etc. It also has good descriptions of common effects, their parameters and uses. The additional DVD/online resources (depending on which edition you get) have audio examples too.
Worth getting if you are also interested in learning and hearing the basic effects and also popular production.
There are a lot of books that cover specific details of synthesis but few enough that give a holistic approach to sound design. I think the reason is it can be extremely varied covering everything from the recording, processing, placement and generation of sounds. Sound design can be very subtle and not very complicated - just using the right sound in the right place. Probably my favourite piece of sound design is the interview at the start of Bladerunner. When the interviewer start to question the android to see if he has any emotions you can hear loud heartbeats as if the robot is frightened and feels trapped. It is a very human sound of course but it gives away the fact that he is a Robot. Not very complicated but one of favourite bits of sound design.
The best places I have found outside of simply watching films and listening to music is reading interviews.