I don't know if this too OT but so many people ask.I just got Sam's C++ in 21 days and it's great.Don't let the name fool you because the book is huge and I don't think I'll finish it in 21 days;).
This is the best C++ book I have ever gotten and I suggest it to anyone who wants to learn C++.
I got C++ for dummies first and that was a big mistake LOL this book is a lot better than that if you want to really learn C++.The only thing bad is the name because I think It makes people think it's one those short books that only briefly go goes thru everything .
http://www.amazon.com/Sams-Teach-Yourself-C%2B%2B-Days/dp/0672327112/sr=8-3/qid=1167816678/ref=pd_bbs_3/002-0922841-0507208?ie=UTF8&s=books

The only thing bad is the name because I think It makes people think it's one those short books that only briefly go goes thru everything .

..which it actually is since its a beginners book. Not many developers would recommend you any of the Sam's series. Ditto with Dietel. A good book for beginners of C++ is Accelerated C++ , Thinking in C++ and for intermediate programmers C++ Programming Language.

Other beginner books don't teach you C++ at the level they ought to.....

Correct. Anything that says "in 21 days", "in 24 hours", or similar things in the title (and most books saying "mastering") are to be avoided like the plague.
They "teach" poor practice, incomplete skills, and no long term retention, leaving the reader just dangerous enough to royally mess up a job.

i got VB in 24 hours. It was crap. 21 days was much better

Only bonus with 24 hours wasd that for £15 you got a free copy incluided of VB6 working model (standard edition except no help or export to .exe) this proved very useful for me and my friends as we are doing it at college.

My favourite beginner book (that doesnt give you bad habits and actually makeas you lear and has few typos) was Microsoft Presses Visual Basic.NET 2003 Step By Step which cost about £100 and came with VB.NET 03 Standard, the samples and the book in HTML on the cd and the printed book. The book alone is £40 in the shop and VB retails at £100 so it was a good deal

I also tried Ivor Hortons Visual C++ 5 which was crap - if that series is still around, avoid like the plague

I got C++ for dummies first and that was a big mistake

The for dummies can be good, it just depends on the authors. I found The Beginning Programming with Java for Dummies and C for Dummies both very good.

They're not. Poor coverage, not enough depth by far, that's the hallmark of the entire series.
While they can help get someone interested or started, they give the impression of being more complete than they are, leading many people to think they've a good level of knowledge when really they don't.
With many of the topics covered by these books that's dangerous (for themselves and often others).

The authors admit they can't explain everything in the space they're alotted, but they do give tips on where to go and what to do next.

there good for getting non computer literate folk into the field

If you're serious enough about something so that your willing to plunk down your own hard-earned cash, why would you choose something that teaches you something half-assed rather than something that does the complete job?

Comments
Well said. :) - joeprogrammer

The authors admit they can't explain everything in the space they're alotted, but they do give tips on where to go and what to do next.

No book promises to teach to everything about something. So why not buy a book which atleast teaches you something practical and correct rather than buying books which teach bosh.....

there good for getting non computer literate folk into the field

most nobs would be lost witha book by say, oriely or mspress so its a good idea to get them interested with something like sams or for dummies then step them up when they have a basic understanding

most nobs would be lost witha book by say, oriely or mspress so its a good idea to get them interested with something like sams or for dummies then step them up when they have a basic understanding

That doesn't necessarily say anything about "for dummies" or "sams teach yourself XXX" books, moreover, it highlights that O'Reilly and MSPress maybe haven't got a great selection of C++ books.

IMHO, the publisher who seem to attract the best C++ authors is Addison-Wesley Professional. Books such as those in the C++ In Depth series, edited by Bjarne Stroustrup, as well as The C++ Standard Library (Josuttis), C++ Primer (Lajoe, Lippman), and The Complete C++ Programming Language (Stroustrup).

Not to say that AWP doesn't publish plenty of terrible books too (As i'm sure they do), but I'd wager that they publish most of what are considered to be the 'best of breed' books.

No book promises to teach to everything about something. So why not buy a book which atleast teaches you something practical and correct rather than buying books which teach bosh.....

I'm sure there are some for dummies books that aren't a good idea to buy, but it's unfair to generalise though I'm only recommending the two I've mentioned.

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