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Manning “Hello! Python” Book Review

From time to time I get the chance to review books about stuff outside my sphere of interests, and recently I had a look at Hello! Python by Anthony Briggs. The breathless “if you don’t enjoy programming in Python, you’re unlikely to enjoy programming at all” in the foreword didn’t fill me with hope; fortunately the book was a good read. Here’s the review I posted on Amazon:

“Hello! Python” is a great read. It looks good for both new programmers to learn about programming, and people familiar with another programming language to learn Python. The tone and pace of the book are pleasant and light, yet Anthony Briggs manages to cover a lot of useful ground in less then 400 pages. If you want an introduction to programming, Python, or both then it’s worth looking at this book.

The examples start out simply, and each chapter leaves you feeling that something has been accomplished. As the book progresses Briggs digs into some of the libraries and techniques which help the programmer deal with real problems more quickly and effectively. He slips in hints about problem solving, structuring programs, and debugging without letting the fun and discovery get bogged down. He takes a tour through some big frameworks, and carries his main example to an interesting conclusion, hopefully with the reader keen to keep playing with it.

By the end of the book the reader should have a good idea of how to write programs in Python, what sort of help is available in terms of external libraries, places to look for further inspiration on-line and in real life.

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