You should be prepared for really hard work rather then shining. (Is there such thing?)
One line in your post looks really troublesome. You are not asking for a page number, but your statement looks like you assume that a page or two can give you a pretty good idea. No. You are going to read many books, paying extremely close attention for most of the pages, and you are going to read between lines more than in lines.
Now, in contrast to the above, I'm going to suggest some really light reading, to get some courage and inspiration.
First of all, probably every engineer has to read this:
Peter Norvig, Teach Yourself Programming in Ten Years
Very encouraging, I hope.
Now, something else: http://www.joelonsoftware.com
First of all, read all the sections on right: "New developer", "Rock star developer", etc.
Even though I cannot agree with this guy on many aspects, his thoughts on personal values of engineers and other players for the teams and personal development, careers, approaches to the problems, organization, values of the work are and even the life are often very deep and interesting.
Ah, I almost forgot. Also, please read my past answer where I translated just one saying of one very talented guy; but this is a great saying: Help Me to Choose A Better Final year Project