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Search in Book Reviews

The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1949 reviews in the database and more every month.
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C# Precisely
Peter Sestoft and Henrik I Hansen
MIT Press
Silva de Beer
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The back of the book claims 'This book is intended for readers who know Java and want to learn C# and as a quick reference for anyone who wants to know C# in more detail than that provided by a standard textbook'. The book presents the entire C# 2.0 programming language, including generics, iterators and anonymous methods. It excludes most of the extensive Microsoft.NET framework class libraries except threads, input/output, and generic collection classes.

The layout of this book is special in the way that all even pages are used to explain the language concepts in theory and all odd pages are used for examples. The idea behind this is nice, but does not always work out that well. Sometimes the even page is difficult to understand, and can only be completely understood after reading the examples. Sometimes the examples do not cover all the theory, and do you keep wondering about other cases. The examples consist of little bits of code, and the output is not always given in the explaining text, so for a thorough understanding you should really execute the code yourself to verify your understanding. I would rather use this book as a quick reference, because to use it as a tutorial can be a bit hard, not everything is immediately understandable if you are new to C#. I had difficulties understanding some theoretic pages, because some forward references to concepts specific to C# are used. I had difficulties in understanding some of the theoretic explanations like delegate and yield. To learn C# one would need much more exercise to use it properly than just reading this book. For example, 6 pages on the subject of threading do seem too little to me on such a complex and error prone subject.