I've read in Modern Organic Synthesis by Zweifel that trans OH groups on rings don't form five membered cyclic acetals that easily, while cis do. Seems like it's a mistake. Do you have any reference or any book recommendation, as I would like to explore this further (protecting groups in carbohydrate chemistry).
Your book is correct, phth is mistaken on this one. Mannopyranosides preferentially form the 5-membered cis-fused ketal with acetone or 2,2-dimethoxypropane, this is well documented in the literature. As you have numbered your original compound, this would be the 3/4 position. Note however that in carbohydrate nomenclature position 1 of an aldose is the anomeric centre (and the primary alcohol is position 6). Acetonation of methyl D-mannopyranoside gives methyl 2,3-O-isopropylidene-D-mannopyranoside in high yield, this one:
As for books, I will have a look in my collection when I get home from holidays and recommend one or two (PM me if I forget). They're general carbohydrate chemistry texts and I can't remember which ones cover protection in the most depth.
This one is very useful, but expensive: http://eu.wiley.com/WileyCDA/WileyTitle/productCd-0471133396.html
I need to see if I still have my copy of it.