on 17 January 2002
As an almost-beginner of HTML I have found this book a great introduction to web-designing as it teaches you right from the beginning; step by step. It's very clear and readable and in a few hours I had enough knowledge to have started creating my own page. That alone was worth [what] I paid for the book!
The author is very good at guiding you through, and gives handy examples to back up his explanations, he even recaps on certain things where he feels it's necessary, which is very useful - especially with my memory. Throughout the chapters there are little 'notes' which are extremely useful giving tips, background and information - what I really liked was the speculative hints from the author of whether a certain new development would be likely to supersede the current technology, this added an element of interest and knowledge to the book, but it is also what will make it outdated very quickly.
The chapters on xhtml and xml are introductory chapters on the two subjects, of which I was disappointed as the book's title led me to believe there would be more information. But then it's not a particularly big book so what can you expect? The chapter are very informative and give a fantastic introduction to the two more complicated languages.
If you are not a Microsoft fan (it is published by the company and so many of their products are plugged throughout the book) or don't like jokey American writers then this is not the book for you. But if you are a beginner at all this web designing stuff, are mildly interested in understanding a little of what the future may hold in terms of web page programming, and you want it all in readable and affordable package, then you would find this book a suitable choice.