Can I learn from a book?

No is the short answer. You can learn many things from books, but not physical movements, yet many Tai Chi books insist on putting in diagrams. This is ONLY useful if the reader is a student of the writer, and requires a broad diagrammatic mnemonic to assist in what has been been learned in class. This is how I teach. My photo notes are only designed as aids. They cannot replace hands-on teaching. Ditto for videos.