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A Gallery of Useful Programming Books

, 19 Jul 2014 CPOL
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A list of useful programming books, some general, some platform- or language-specific

Editorial Note

This article is in the Book Review chapter. Reviews are intended to provide you with information on books - both paid and free - that others consider useful and of value to developers. Read a good programming book? Write a review!

I own dozens and have read dozens more of what my wife calls "those stupid books" (programming books) over the last 20 years. Just when it comes to books covering various aspects of my first (programming) love alone (Borland/Inprise/CodeGear/Embarcadero (etc.?) Delphi), I have upwards of a dozen, dating from the mid-1990s to the mid-200s. One of the best was "Delphi Component Design" by Danny Thorpe, and I even wrote one myself, but I have "moved on" from Delphi and will not list any of those here, as I consider Delphi sort of a lost cause and have embraced the "Microsoft stack" (for the most part - you'll see some Android books in the list, too) which seems to be getting better and better all the time.

Click on the book's image to go to its Amazon page, where you can read reviews by several people; that way you don't get just my opinion. Obviously, in each case I recommend the book, provided you are working in -- or at least interested in -- the category (the first category applies to all programmers, of course).

General (Globally applicable concepts/Best Practices, Etc.)

Code Complete 2 by Steve McConnell

The Pragmatic Programmer by Andrew Hunt & David Thomas

The Psychology of Computer Programming by Gerald Weinberg


Head First Object-Oriented Analysis and Design by Brett D. McLaughlin, Gary Pollice, and Dave West


Coding in Delphi by Nick Hodges

Delphi XE2 Foundations by Chris Rolliston

Delphi in a Nutshell by Ray Lischner

The Tomes of Delphi: Developer's Guide to Troubleshooting by B. Clay Shannon


JavaScript & jQuery: The Missing Manual by David Sawyer McFarland

Murach's JavaScript and jQuery by Zak Ruvalcaba and Mike Murach


HTML5 24-Hour Trainer by Joseph W. Lowery and Mark Fletcher


CSS3: The Missing Manual by David Sawyer McFarland


Beginning Android Tablet Application Development by Wei-Meng Lee

Programming Android by Zigurd Mednieks, Laird Dornin, G. Blake Meike, and Masumi Nakamura

Android Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach by Dave Smith and Jeff Friesen


Beginning ASP.NET Web Pages with WebMatrix by Mike Brind and Imar Spaanjaars

Building ASP.NET Web Pages with Microsoft WebMatrix by Steve Lydford


C# 5.0 In a Nutshell: The Definitive Reference by Joseph Albahari & Ben Albahari

C# in Depth by Jon Skeet


Windows 8 Apps with XAML and C# Unleashed by Adam Nathan

Programming Windows 8 Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript by Kraig Brockschmidt


These are my favorite programming books (so far); I have many others on my amazon "wish list," of which some may eventually make it to this list. Among those on my "short list" are:

  • Pro ASP.NET Web API: HTTP Web Services in ASP.NET by Tugberk Ugurlu
  • Mastering Web Application Development with AngularJS by Pawel Kozlowski
  • Agile Principles, Patterns, and Practices in C# by Micah Martin
  • Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship by Robert C. Martin


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

B. Clay Shannon
Founder "Across Time & Space"
United States United States
Ideaman and Coder at Across Time & Space, creator of the Windows Store App "Photrax", which can be downloaded as a trial (7 days) from
Peripatetic and picaresque, I have lived in eight states; specifically, besides my native California (where I was born and where I now again reside) in chronological order: New York, Montana, Alaska, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Idaho, and Missouri.
I am also a writer of both fiction (for which I use a nom de plume, "Blackbird Crow Raven", as a nod to my Native American heritage - I am "½ Cowboy, ½ Indian") and nonfiction:
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Comments and Discussions

GeneralMy vote of 3 Pinmembermahmood seyedkarimi21-Jul-14 1:00 
SuggestionBetter merge these... PinprofessionalKornfeld Eliyahu Peter19-Jul-14 21:32 
QuestionMy rating of 5 [modified] PinmemberBill_Hallahan5-Nov-13 16:04 
SuggestionFew more suggestions. [modified] PinprofessionalRanjan.D2-Nov-13 8:08 
QuestionLink not working: The Psychology of Computer Programming by Gerald Weinberg Pinmember_Noctis_1-Nov-13 22:50 
AnswerRe: Link not working: The Psychology of Computer Programming by Gerald Weinberg PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon2-Nov-13 0:52 
GeneralRe: Link not working: The Psychology of Computer Programming by Gerald Weinberg Pinmember_Noctis_2-Nov-13 1:09 
GeneralMy vote of 1 Pinmembermikepwilson1-Nov-13 9:21 
GeneralRe: My vote of 1 PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 9:38 
GeneralRe: My vote of 1 Pinprotectorthatraja22-Jul-14 0:30 
SuggestionDo we need another list? PinprotectorDaveAuld1-Nov-13 7:37 
GeneralRe: Do we need another list? PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 9:57 
GeneralMy vote of 1 Pinmember ProgramFOX1-Nov-13 6:49 
GeneralRe: My vote of 1 PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 6:57 
Nice list! Thanks for the link; the difference between that one and mine is that one has more books and mine has images. I'm a "visual" person, so it would be nice if the two methodologies were combined.
QuestionCode Complete Pinmemberednrg1-Nov-13 6:44 
AnswerRe: Code Complete [modified] PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 6:55 
GeneralRe: Code Complete PinprotectorPete O'Hanlon5-Nov-13 13:55 
GeneralRe: Code Complete PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon5-Nov-13 14:05 
GeneralRe: Code Complete Pinmemberbombersa21-Jul-14 10:00 
GeneralRe: Code Complete PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon21-Jul-14 10:05 
GeneralMy vote of 1 PinmemberAndreas Gieriet1-Nov-13 6:21 
QuestionNice list PinmemberLOKImotive1-Nov-13 5:32 
AnswerRe: Nice list PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 6:01 
GeneralMy vote of 5 PinprofessionalPrasad Khandekar31-Oct-13 22:51 
GeneralMy vote of 1 PinmemberRob Grainger31-Oct-13 0:26 
QuestionThat's not a Review PinmemberRob Grainger31-Oct-13 0:25 
AnswerRe: That's not a Review [modified] PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon31-Oct-13 4:10 
GeneralRe: That's not a Review PinmemberRob Grainger1-Nov-13 0:16 
GeneralRe: That's not a Review PinprofessionalB. Clay Shannon1-Nov-13 3:31 

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