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Top (max 10) reviews: Python Essential Reference (4th Edition).

4.3 out of 5.0    108 total reviews.

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5.0 out of 5.0 -

by Anonymous729 on Sept. 21, 2017

Read this book after you have a bit of knowledge about Python and you will be well-rewarded. I'm only 100 pages into it so far, but I really like it. This is my 2nd book on Python, the first ("Introducing Python:...", by Lubanovic) was a faster read but left many open questions. The prices of the books were about the same. You'll definitely get your money's worth on this volume! Obviously, some experience with programming languages (such as the matter of "constructors" and "inheritance", for instance) is expected.
Update (after reading 200+ pages) It is easy for me to agree with all of the reviewers who praise this book, and I can understand the point of view of some of those who are critical. In some cases, additional examples would be helpful, and perhaps even necessary. However, with any effort at all, you will surely be able to locate some online. But.., consider again the title of my review.

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by Maciej Swat on Oct. 27, 2012

Best feature of this book is that it covers introductory Python on approx 12 pages and if you programmed in other languages you can pick up Python in less than 15 minutes. Later on it deals with pretty much every aspect of Python language in particular, generators, coroutines, decorators etc... in great detail.I only wish that David Beazley included more examples in the book itself, although he is very good at providing references to external resources - like his own lectures or presentations.
If you are entirely new to programming you may find that other books willbe better suited for you e.g. Mark Lutz "Programming Python" but if you are serious Python developer (or even half-serious) "Python Essential Reference" must be on your desk.

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by Gene Olson on July 5, 2015

Probably the best book available on the subject. Has great technical detail, and is conspicuously absent of tedious beginner examples.

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by David Lurie on April 9, 2013

I have read a lot of computer books in my day, and this text is one of the best written, if not THE best written computer books I've seen. The author clearly writes from a depth of knowledge. The book is encyclopedic and up to date. The explanations give not only the surface facts but also the deeper "what this is for" kind of explanations that put the language constructs into the meaningful context of writing software. Be warned that this book is not intended as a "learn how to program" book. Rather, its purpose is as a language reference. But since this purpose is clearly stated right in the title, most buyers know what they're getting. A truly great piece of writing.

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by wlknight on Sept. 27, 2012

I wanted to learn this language quickly and apply the knowledge to my work. This book became kind of a long time companion. The nice part of this book is it does not repeat the information already existing on [...]. It rather supplements it in a very elegant way. The examples are short, effective and right to the point to demonstrate the concept. As a new user of Python I find some of the concepts e.g. "yield" a bit hard to follow but there is always online help. The organization of this book helps one to find a specific topic very quickly. It is not a book for exhaustive reference. I strongly recommend this book.

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by William Schumacher on Feb. 24, 2012

The approach the author uses in writing the content in this book is very easy for someone with good programming knowledge to understand easily. I was concerned when I read a review that said the kindle edition does not have a table of contents, however this is not true. The kindle edition does indeed include table of contents and linking to chapters and sections. In short this is the best python material I have read to date and is now my new favorite reference book.
If you are concerned about 2.x to 3 examples/material the author will tell you what needs to be changed for coding python 3.

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by Dale Herrington on Oct. 24, 2015

Great reference. Starting to get dated though, but still one of the best Python reference books out there. If the author would write a well updated 5th edition and I would buy it.

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by Sunbuffett on April 7, 2016

Great resource for experienced programmers who want to get started on Python, also good for beginner Python programmers. If you've never programmed before, look somewhere else though, this book may not be for you.
This book is mainly focused on Python 2, but it points out the differences between Python 2 and 3 wherever needed. Highly recommend it!

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by blueshoes on Feb. 19, 2013

I am an experienced software developer who has learned (and forgotten) many programming languages. When I find myself in the position of needing to learn a new one, I am accustomed to buying and reading a book on it. So when I found myself in the position of needing to do some development using Python, I bought copies of the official Python docs. That turned out to be a terrible place to start. I tried some other books before discovering this one. I could go on and on about how well it is written, organized, etc. But I will just say that this book perfectly filled my needs.

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by Joseph J. Mc Donnell on Nov. 10, 2017

Once one understands basic OOP w/ Python, this is the go2 book for me. Terse, while covering many details