Category Archives: Books

Books that I’ve read, reviewed or cited for this article

Python 201 Writing Update: Only 4 Chapters to go!

I finished up section #4 earlier this week which brings the book up to 26 chapters and a little over 200 pages. I have four more chapters planned and then a couple of updates to previous chapters. My goal is to have the book ready for proofing at the end of the month. Then I’ll create a sample print of the book and check it over for errors.

If anyone has been reading the book and found any errors, please let me know. I’ll be finalizing the chapters in mid-August or so and would like them to be as good as they can be before then.

Thanks so much for your support!

P.S. If you’d like to purchase the early version of the book, you can do at Gumroad or Leanpub

Book Review: Python Projects for Kids

I get asked by publishers to review books from time to time. Last month, Packt asked me if I’d be willing to review for their book, Python Projects for Kids by Jessica Ingrassellino. Frankly I tend to avoid beginning Python books now because they tend to be very similar, but I thought this one might be interesting.

Quick Review

  • Why I picked it up: In this case, because Packt Publishing asked me to
  • Why I finished it: Mostly because Packt personnel badgered me to do so
  • I’d give it to: Not really sure. There are much better, more in-depth beginner books for Python out there

Continue reading Book Review: Python Projects for Kids

Book Review: Modular Programming with Python

Earlier this year or late 2015, Packt Publishing asked me to be technical reviewer for a book called “Modular Programming with Python” by Erik Westra. It sounded really interesting and it ended up being one of the best books I’ve read from Packt. Note that I am the sole technical reviewer of the book. I’m not sure why Packt went that route for this book as they normally have 2-3 reviewers, but perhaps they are trying to accelerate their writing process.

Quick Review

  • Why I picked it up: Primarily because Packt asked me to. However it really is an interesting book
  • Why I finished it: Because the book is short and very well written
  • I’d give it to: An intermediate developer who needs to brush up on their code organizational skills

Continue reading Book Review: Modular Programming with Python

Python 201 Book Writing Update: Part 1 is Ready

I’ve been busily working on my second book, Python 201: Intermediate Python. In part one of the book, there are 10 chapters. I recently finished up the last chapter for that part of the book. While I have some tweaks I want to do to a couple of the chapters in this part of the book, I’m going to leave them alone for now so I can get part 2 done. Then I’ll be going back to part 1 to do some updates. This also allows the early adopters time to read the first chapters and send me messages about typos or bugs.

For those of you who didn’t get in on the Kickstarter for the book, the first 10 chapters are as follows:

  • Chapter 1 – The argparse module
  • Chapter 2 – The collections module
  • Chapter 3 – The contextlib module (Context Managers)
  • Chapter 4 – The functools module (Function overloading, caching, etc)
  • Chapter 5 – All about imports
  • Chapter 6 – The importlib module
  • Chapter 7 – Iterators and Generators
  • Chapter 8 – The itertools module
  • Chapter 9 – The re module (An Intro to Regex in Python)
  • Chapter 10 – The typing module (Type Hinting)

There are currently 71 pages in the book so far in my Gumroad edition and over 80 pages in the Leanpub version. Leanpub is generated differently which means they use different fonts and font sizes, which is why that version has more pages.  Regardless, the book is coming along well and is still on track for a September, 2016 release!

Pre-Order Python 201 Paperback

I have decided to offer a pre-order of the paperback version of my next book. You will be able to pre-order a signed copy of the book which will ship in September, 2016. I am limiting the number of pre-orders to 100. If you’re interested in getting the book, you can do so here

Python 201 Cover

Python 201 Kickstarter Update – The End is Nigh!

We are entering the last few days for the Kickstarter Campaign for my second book, Python 201. Since we’re almost to our stretch goal, I have added new chapters to the book. In addition to what was already covered, the book will also cover the following topics:

  • Python’s super()
  • descriptors (magic methods)
  • Scope (local, global and the new non_local)
  • typing
  • asyncio / await / async

That brings the total number of chapters up to 27! If you feel like contributing, you can do so here:

Python 201 Kickstarter Update #3 – Cover Almost Done!

My artist got back to me today with a mostly done cover that I wanted to share with you all:

Python 201 Cover

We have 8 days left in the campaign and we’re almost to our stretch goal! Be sure to tell your friends that now’s the best time to show support for this fun book! You can pledge support here.

Python 201 Kickstarter Campaign Update – New Cover Preview

We’re halfway through the Kickstarter campaign for my new book, Python 201 and we’re a little over halfway to my first stretch goal. If you know anyone who would like to add to their Python skills, be sure to post a link to the campaign to your social website(s) of choice. I also added a couple new reward levels due to input from my backers.

You can now get a T-shirt + a Paperback copy of Python 201 or you can go with the EVERYTHING level of support, which will get you T-Shirt, a paperback of Python 201 and 101, the eBooks and the Python 101 Screencast.

Finally, I got in touch with my illustrator and she sent me a quick preview of the cover of the book which I’d like to share:


Note that this is just a rough version of the cover, but the whole thing should be done some time next week.

Thanks again for your support!

Python 201 Book Outline

Over the weekend, I spent some time rearranging ideas for my latest book such that I have have four specific sections of the book. Here they are:

Part I – Intermediate Modules

  • Chapter 1 – The argparse module
  • Chapter 2 – The collections module
  • Chapter 3 – The contextlib module (Context Managers)
  • Chapter 4 – The functools module (Function overloading, caching, etc)
  • Chapter 5 – All about imports
  • Chapter 6 – The importlib module
  • Chapter 7 – The itertools module
  • Chapter 8 – The re module (An Intro to Regex in Python)
  • Chapter 9 – The typing module (Type Hinting)

Part II – Odds and Ends

  • Chapter 10 – generators / iterators
  • Chapter 11 – map, filter, reduce
  • Chapter 12 – unicode
  • Chapter 13 – benchmarking
  • Chapter 14 – encryption
  • Chapter 15 – Connecting to databases

Part III – Web

  • Chapter 16 – Web scraping
  • Chapter 17 – Working with web APIs
  • Chapter 18 – ftplib
  • Chapter 19 – urllib / httplib (client / server)

Part IV – Testing

  • Chapter 20 – Doctest
  • Chapter 21 – unittest
  • Chapter 22 – mock
  • Chapter 23 –

I want to note that these are just the topics that will absolutely be included. I may add others. I will also be adding others should I reach my stretch goal. If you’re interested in getting early access to the book or just want to support the blog, you can do so at my Kickstarter for Python 201!

ANN: Python 201 Book Kickstarter

I am happy to announce my latest project, which is the sequel to my Python 101 book: Python 201 – Intermediate Python. I am launching a Kickstarter campaign to help fund its publication so if you’re interested in supporting, you can do so here:

If you already know the basics of Python and now you want to go to the next level, then this is the book for you! This book is for intermediate level Python programmers only. There won’t be any beginner chapters here.

Note: This book will be covering Python 3

Here are some of the topics covered:

  • generators / iterators
  • Functional idioms (map, filter, reduce).
  • Writing your own context managers.
  • Command-line argument processing
  • collections
  • itertools
  • functools
  • Function Overloading
  • Basics of regular expressions
  • httplib / urllib (client / server)
  • web scraping
  • Basics of Unicode (encoding and codecs)
  • Timing code (benchmarking)
  • Testing (unit tests, doc tests, mock, coverage)