Ok, I need a little book advice, and I hope im posting in the right forum...
I am finishing up my MS in physics, and am taking stat mech from Pathria's text. Next year I will basically have a year off...I'll be working only part time, and studying for qualifiers (im going to apply to phd programs for the fall of 2013). Im going to focus my preperation on the core 4 subject areas of classical, quantum, and statistical mechanics, and electrodynamics. In addition to working many practice problems, Id also like to read some additional texts. My intent is to eventually work in quantum field theory.
I have been searching for books on the core 4 subjects that would give me a deeper level of understanding than that normally obtained in the first year graduate classes; and have had trouble selecting a good stat mech book. Allow me to explain a little more about what Im searching for...
In classical mechanics, I selected the text by Jose and Saletan because it developes the subject within the framework of differential geometry; a different approach than the traditional texts by authors such as Goldstein.
In electrodynamics, I will be using the book by Baylis, because it uses clifford algebra and differential geometry....giving it a different slant than the more canonical books by authours like Jackson.
In Quantum, I found a book by Lam that seems to emphasize the group theory and geometric symmetries a bit more than does the standard Sakurai text. (Im not 100% sure about this text yet, if anyone knows a good 'alternative' quantum text, please let me know)
Sorry for the big wall of text, but I think it helps explain what I'm seeking.
So, Does anyone know of a good (graduate level) stat mech book that approaches the subject from a non-standard viewpoint? A text that might provide me with a deeper (or perhaps only different) theoretical insight into the subject of statistical mechanics?