Digging into WordPress book review

A few days ago, Chris Coyier and Jeff Starr released their awaited WordPress book named Digging into WordPress and I was lucky enought to get my hands on a copy generously given by the authors.

So, what’s inside? After reading the whole 400 pages of the book I just wrote a review to help you getting a better opinion on the book and see how it can help you to enhance your WordPress skills.

Introducing the book

[tweet]Some time ago, a new WordPress-focused blog came to life. It wasn’t one of these blogs which only plagiarize content from other WP-related blogs. No, it was a quality blog which shown new technics and provided an useful content to the readers.
This blog is called Dig into WordPress. I wasn’t surprised to see that Jeff Starr and Chris Coyier were behind this new project. For those who don’t know yet, both of them are established bloggers which have achieved blogging success with their own sites, so it was really exiting to see this “blogging dream team” coming to life.
Some weeks after I realeased my own WordPress book (called WordPress CookBook, more info here) I saw that the Dig WP team was planning to release a book, and it grabbed my attention : Excepted the “Success with WordPress” ebook by Kyle Eslick, I never really liked any of the WordPress related books I have read.
Being a die-hard WordPress lover, I have done many research about it and I was tired of the amount of books which were boring to read, and which didn’t made me learnt anything new.

Digging into WordPress ebook

A few days after the book release, I was very happy to receive Digging into WordPress for free in my mail box, as a present from the authors. After sending them warm thanks, I copied the book on my laptop so I can read it in the train to Paris.
And man, I loved it.

So, what are you going to learn?

The less I can say is that Digging into WordPress is a very well choosen name for this book. Unlike most books about WordPress, Digging into WordPress will not help you to set up a basic WordPress install with a plugin and a bad looking theme.
Instead, this book focuses on what’s inside WordPress and all the details that will make your blog better, more secure and more powerful.

But does that mean that this book isn’t for beginners? Well, if you’re a total newbie who never installed WordPress it is not the best book to start with. But if you’re a motivated beginner or if you have already some experience with PHP and/or CMS, you’ll definitely enjoy this book.

Now, let’s have a look into what you’re going to learn in Digging into WordPress.
The book is divided in 8 chapters :

  • Chapter 1 : Welcome to WordPress
  • Chapter 2 : Setting Up WordPress
  • Chapter 3 : Anatomy of a WordPress Theme
  • Chapter 4 : Theme Design and Development
  • Chapter 5 : Extending Functionality
  • Chapter 6 : Working with RSS Feeds
  • Chapter 7 : Working with comments
  • Chapter 8 : Search Engine Optimization
  • Chapter 8 : Maintaining a Healthy Site

Another important thing to note is that as you can see on the screenshots featured in this post, the book layout is extremely well designed, which make it very pleasant to read. Seing a technology book with nice fonts and typography is quite rare, so it was a really good surprise.

My personal advice on the book

Being often called an expert myself when it comes to WordPress, I can say that the work done by Chris and Jeff is truely amazing. I have learnt new things, remembered some I forgot, and most notably, I had a real great time reading this awesome work, which show the author definitive passion for WordPress.
A wonderful book that any serious web developer should have in his collection.

Digging into WordPress, by Chris Coyier & Jeff Starr – 400 pages. Buy it ($27)

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Published on November 23rd, 2009 by Jean-Baptiste Jung

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