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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Programming Perl (3rd Edition)
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Larry Wall, Tom Christiansen, Jon Orwant
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Needs a hard cover

This will be my third copy of this great book. I use it so much I wear them out. Would love to see a hard cover version.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Learning Perl, Third Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Randal L. Schwartz, Tom Phoenix
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Excellent intro into Perl

Most of the book flows: smooth, logical, heuristic. A very good introduction to what can be a confusing language. Best book I've seen for a programmer to use to pick up a new language. You will want the companion camel book, Programming Perl, for reference; but don't try to learn Perl from the camel book unless you are a masochist.
Two free bits of advice. Skip the first chapter. If you want to learn Perl, you know why. There is enough stuff in the first chapter to stifle the impulse if you read it carefully.
Second, practice your skimming skills on the second chapter. Then go back and re-read it carefully when you're fresh. It's long and important, but when you've got past this chapter, you'll roll the rest of the way through the book.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Software Engineering (6th Edition)
Publisher: Addison Wesley
Authors: Ian Sommerville
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
Worth the paper it's printed on but no more

This book is an encyclopedic volume of knowledge about Software Engineering, and proceeds from the beginning of the process to the end, with tangents being in the last few chapters. It has the feel of a textbook, with exercises and Key Points at the end of each chapter.
That said, it isn't very entertaining and if it hadn't been my course book, I would have chosen a different Software Engineering text. This book is a great supplemental reference to get more detailed information. I keep it on my shelf at work as a handy reference.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Effective Java Programming Language Guide
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Joshua Bloch
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A Must Read For All Java Developers

So you've been a Java Developer since Day One. Or you've just decided to become one. Either way this book is a must read. Object Oriented programming takes a certain skill and understanding, and Josh Bloch's book addresses a number of Java programming idioms that most people don't pay enough attention to. I know I've certainly violated a number of the rules or suggestions made in this book.
The book is easy to read through, and can be used as a reference book as well as a learning guide. The top Java people around participated in its review, and if James Gosling stands up at a JavaOne keynote and recommends this book (which he did), that's enough to make me sit up and pay attention.
Get it. Read it. Use it. You won't regret it.