It's modelled around the suttas, but as best as is possible, they're sequential in the story they tell, and where relevant they are supported by commentary (but the commentarial additions are clearly designated as such). Its strength lies of in the use of multiple "narrator" modes... from memory, one suttanta, one Mahavihara, one something else (possibly non-sectarian historian?).
Sorry if I'm a bit sketchy, it's been a while, but to put it in context, I read this after reading the Majjhima and Samyutta Nikayas and still found much benefit from it and it would be my first port of call if there was some aspect of the Buddha's life I wanted to revisit.
The Amazon customer comments as linked to above are bound to contain additional information.
"Having understood name-and-form, which is a product of prolificity,
And which is the root of all malady within and without,
He is released from bondage to the root of all maladies,
That Such-like-one is truly known as 'the one who has understood'." (Snp 3.6)
"Whether I were to preach in brief, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach in detail, Sāriputta, or whether I were to preach both in brief or in detail, Sāriputta, rare are those who understand." (A I 333, Sāriputtasutta)