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When you’re learning a new programming language or tech stack, you’ll often be overwhelmed by the billions of resources (books, courses, tutorials, and more) available to get started.
If you’re an experienced programmer learning Python, learning just in time to complete specific projects probably works best. But if you’re looking for a comprehensive learning journey, you may prefer a structured learning program, coupled with projects, to familiarize yourself with the language.
Here we present five Python books to help you master Python features and create maintainable applications. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced Python programmer, these books will help you expand your understanding of the language.
Python for everyone by Dr. Charles Severance (Dr. Chuck) presents a code-focused approach to learning the Python programming language. This is one of the best books to read if you’re new to Python.
From installing Python to web scraping to using common data formats, this book covers a wide range of topics, along with practical exercises and solutions. You can also follow the Python conference for everyone— available for free — on the freeCodeCamp YouTube channel.
Topics covered in this book include:
- Variables, expressions and instructions
- Conditional execution
- Loops and iterations
- Working with strings and files
- Lists, tuples and dictionaries
- Regular expressions
- Network programming
- Use web services
- Object Oriented Programming (OOP)
- Data base
- Data visualization
Start reading: Python for Everyone (PY4E)
Automate boring things with Python by Al Sweigart is another great beginner-friendly resource for learning basic to intermediate Python concepts.
You will learn the basics such as embedded data structures, control flow, and exception handling. Additionally, you will learn how to write Python scripts to automate tasks like searching for files, downloading files from the web, processing PDF files, and more.
Here’s an overview of some of the topics covered in this book (in addition to the basics):
- Matching patterns with regular expressions
- Input Validation
- Read and write to files
- Web Scraping
- Work with spreadsheets, PDF, CSV and JSON in Python
- Task Scheduling
- Image manipulation
- GUI Automation
Start reading: Automate boring things with Python
Python 3 templates, recipes, and expressions is a book aimed at intermediate Python programmers who are already familiar with the language’s features and looking to take it to the next level.
The book begins with a review of Python functions and classes and covers the following:
- Initializing and cleaning up instances
- Unit testing and test-driven development in Python
- Generators, iterators, itertools
- Design Patterns and Model Refactoring in Python
Start reading: Python 3 templates, recipes, and expressions
When you go beyond simple Python scripts and start building applications, you need to understand clean architecture and create production-ready applications.
Clean architectures in Python by Leonardo Giordani is a free book that covers:
- Fundamentals of clean architecture
- Components of a clean architecture
- integration with external systems (Postgres and MongoDB)
- Run a production-ready system
Start reading: Clean architectures in Python
You are familiar with the core of Python and the functionality of built-in modules. You also know best practices for writing clean Python code. So what’s next?
If you want to get started with data science, you also need to add some Python data science libraries. THE Python Data Science Handbook is a comprehensive resource for learning the basics of data cleaning, analysis, and manipulation.
The book covers Python concepts such as Python magic commands, debugging, and profiling code. This then covers enough ground to help you get started with Python data science libraries and building machine learning models. Here is an overview:
- Machine learning
Start reading: Python Data Science Handbook
As mentioned, it’s important to apply what you learn by building small projects that interest you! These books will serve as your companion in the process.
When you start building applications, you may introduce subtle anti-patterns into your code. So no matter what programming language you’re building with, be sure to read Clean code And The pragmatic programmer to create better applications.
Bala Priya C is an Indian developer and technical writer. She enjoys working at the intersection of mathematics, programming, data science, and content creation. His areas of interest and expertise include DevOps, data science and natural language processing. She loves reading, writing, coding and coffee! Currently, she is working on learning and sharing her knowledge with the developer community by creating tutorials, how-to guides, opinion pieces, and more.