Image from Amazon Title: Murach's Java Programming, 6th edition
Author(s): Joel Murach
Category: Java in General
Murach wrote:This is the 6th Edition of our best-selling Java book. Since 2001, it has been used by thousands of beginning and experienced programmers to master the Java skills that are essential, whether you’re creating desktop, web, or mobile applications. Now revised to cover Java SE 17 and updated throughout, it focuses on today’s best practices, covers both NetBeans and Eclipse, and makes it easier than ever to learn Java, even if you’ve never programmed in any language before.
The book is updated for Java 17. The content in the book is great. Many Java concepts are explained. For features added since Java 7, the book highlights when they were added. Given that Java 7 came out in 2013, I think this is overkill, but it doesn't hurt anything. For the more recent versions of Java, it is certainly useful. The coverage of newer features is excellent. I like that some is embedded in the main text like switch expressions and others are at the end such as advanced features like sealed classes and records. I'm impressed that even modules were covered since those aren't as common.
Since this is the sixth edition of the book, the authors have to keep modernizing it. I think they did a good job on that. For example, there is one page about pre-Java 8 dates followed by most of a chapter about the modern way of doing it. I would have liked to have the same thing for File I/O. While I agree it is important to know the classic, way, I think it is also important to know you can just write Files.readAllLines() and the like.
This book shows IDE use along with learning the language. This is excellent for beginners. They choose Eclipse and NetBeans as the IDEs. Which is fine. However, they also make that claim that IntellIJ is less popular than Eclipse and NetBeans. In my circles, IntelliJ is most popular so I did some googling. Either this statement is true in educational circles or it used to be true. In any case, it is misleading right now. I also like that there is info for both Mac and Windows users.
A lot of effort goes into making the book easy to read. The paired pages format allows for lists and tables to supplement text. I like that code has a gray highlight to call attention to certain lines. The visual for console output was great as well. I also like that there are some longer applications so readers can see context. Each chapter ends with good exercises for reinforcement. I recommend this book for someone new to Java.
I give this book 8 out of 10 stars.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing this review.
Hi Jeanne. Thanks for this review of our latest Java book.
I'm glad you think we did a good job of modernizing this book overall, and I agree with you that we should have modernizing our coverage of file I/O. I will put that on the list for the next edition!
We will also consider adding coverage of IntelliJ to the next edition. I think you're right that IntelliJ is at least as popular if not more popular than Eclipse or NetBeans. I think IntelliJ has been gaining in popularity for years now, probably since 2009 when JetBrains introduced the open-source Community Edition, and we were slow to realize it.