Now in widespread use, generalized additive models (GAMs) have evolved into a standard statistical methodology of considerable flexibility. While there is an outstanding research monograph on GAMs, there has been a long-standing need for an accessible introductory treatment of the subject. Generalized Additive Models - An Introduction with R imparts a thorough understanding of the theory and practical applications of GAMs and related advanced models, enabling informed use of these very flexible tools. The author bases his approach on a framework of penalized regression splines, and builds a well-grounded foundation through motivating chapters on linear and generalized linear models. While firmly focused on the practical aspects of GAMs, discussions include fairly full explanations of the theory underlying the methods. Use of the freely available R software helps explain the theory and illustrates the practicalities of linear, generalized linear, and generalized additive models, as well as their mixed effect extensions. The treatment is rich with practical examples, and it includes an entire chapter on the analysis of real data sets using R and the author's add-on package mgcv.