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Learning Agile: Understanding Scrum, XP, Lean, and Kanban

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Author/s    : Andrew Stellman, Jennifer Greene
Publisher   : O'Reilly Media
Category   : Project Management, Process and Best Practices
Review by : Jeanne Boyarsky
Rating        : 10 horseshoes

"Learning Agile" was an awesome book. It introduces Scrum, XP, lean and kanban nicely with good examples an narratives. This was not your serious "animal series" O'Reilly book. In addition to numerous cartoons and diagrams, I even spotted a Head First style image and two xkcd comics.

What's called Chapter 1 introduces agile followed by what would traditionally be the introduction.Interesting seeing those two reversed. It works though as it shows the points of view of different readers. I like how each chapter ends with FAQs, exercises you can today and ideas to learn more. The key point boxes sprinkled through each chapter were helpful as well.

I'm particularly impressed with how they handled the names of characters in Chapter 2. When I saw the characters introduced I groaned thinking it was one of those books where I would have to keep track of who these people are. But there was enough context for it to be obvious. And when they referred to them at the end of the chapter, their titles were restated. The authors even told us at the end of the story that we wouldn't be seeing them again. After that, I trusted that the narratives would be easy to follows and wasn't disappointed.

I liked the phrases "better-than-not-doing-it" and "magical thinking". For me, the test of an agile or process book is whether I finish with ideas of new things to try. And I do.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for reviewing this book on behalf of CodeRanch.

More info at Amazon.com
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