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Sams Teach Yourself C++ in 21 Days: Complete Compiler Edition Paperback – 26 Mar 1999

3.8 out of 5 stars 109 customer reviews

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Paperback, 26 Mar 1999
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Product details

  • Paperback: 850 pages
  • Publisher: Sams; 3 edition (26 Mar. 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0672315645
  • ISBN-13: 978-0672315640
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 19.7 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,505,142 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Author

Third Edition - Fully Updated
I'm very proud of the third edition of this book, which I've fully updated to the new ANSI/ISO standard. Every code example has been checked on a number of compilers, and I provide full source code, a FAQ and an errata sheet on my web site at I thank you very much for considering my book and I hope it will meet your needs and expectations. Thanks again. -j --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

The C++ programming language is enjoying a resurgence of popularity. The combination of the proven Sams Teach Yourself C++ in 21 Days book with the best-selling Microsoft 6.0 compiler makes this package the perfect starter kit for new C++ programmers! Each of the 21 lessons consist of a full days activities as you learn the ins and outs of C++ programming. You will be able to verify you are learning C++ by answering the questions within the book. Also use the assessment exam to see how well you have learned or what you need to review.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I have loads of books on C++. I am a skilled C programmer but could never get the gist of C++ and Object Oriented programming until I studied this book. Yes STUDIED. There are exercises for you to complete at the end of each chapter. DO THEM. You definitely will not do it in 21 days. The author (in another book) admits these are 'virtual days' needing 8-10 hours of study for each chapter. If this seems alot don't bother with C++ try Visual basic, C++ is not easy.
This must be the best book I have on C++, it doesn't quickly skim the subject but analyses the concepts and has detailed explanations of the code examples with DO's and DON'Ts. If you complete this book go onto
Scott Meyers Effective C++ books then you'll be a C++ GURU. Oh... you'll also need to study books on windows programming, see Jeff Prosise's book Programming windows with MFC. Thank you Jesse for this great book.
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Format: Paperback
This book claims that the code is ANSI compliant and so should work with a modern C++ compiler. As far as I can see this is not so. The only reference that I can see is the standard namespace which is mentioned in day 1. There is no use of the standard String class - even at a basic level. Instead in day 13, together with arrays and linked list you will see the old fashioned C-strings being used together with the authors version of a String class. Interestingly enough within the program that includes the author's string class there is a #include <string.h> instead of #include <cstring> indicating that the author has mixed old C++ header files with those currently available in the ANSI/OSI standard. This I find very confusing, and would indeed be doubly so for a total beginner.
There are also no mention of many important topics included in the ANSI/OSI standard. I would have thought that the vector class would have fitted in well with the chapter on arrays and linked lists. The linked lists could have been left till later.

The earlier chapters are relatively easy to follow and could easily be completed in 1 day. The main problem is that the order of presentation does not make much sense. The beginner is not guided from one concept to another. Many of the explanations are rather longwinded and there is a lot of waffle that should be skipped.

The book is useful in places, but does not form a coherent text book for a beginner C++ programmer, which I understand is the target audience.
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By A Customer on 13 Oct. 2003
Format: Paperback
The book is well written, well structured, and explains the basics of C++ in a clear and easy to read fashion. There are far worse books out there.
However, it spends time on things that are irrelevant to the absolute beginner (eg arrays of pointers, a whole chapter on OO design) and spends no time at all teaching you about the classes provided by the C++ standard library, which have the potential to make things way easier for beginners. Also, both the examples and exercises provided focus very much on syntax rather than on use, and as such you gain very little clue as to how what you are being taught might be used in a real program.
I prefer "Accelerated C++", which I bought on the recommendation of the website of the Association of C and C++ Users, and was glad that I did. It covers more material and gives a better idea of how to program real-life programs that Liberty's book, despite the fact it is only half the length.
The only problem with this alternative is that there is no repetition or filler at all - in Liberty's book the cut out grey boxes and constant repetition of earlier points make it a far easier read, whilst if you skip a sentence in Accelerated C++ for being too hard to understand you'll probably understand the next sentence even less.
In short, if you're a total beginner who likes things to be repeated a lot to understand them, maybe Liberty's book is for you, but if you're willing to put up with a more intense, technical style of writing then you could gain a lot more by buying Accelerated C++ instead.
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Format: Paperback
By the time of typing this (November 2013), it is obviously somewhat late for me to contribute a 'review' of this book, as the world of computing has moved on, but as it is the most disgraceful instance that I have ever encountered (in any subject field) of inadequate proof-reading, I would like belatedly to share my opinion on it with any Amazon customer who is considering buying a copy.

In 2000 I bought the following two books from SAMS publications: the book under discussion here (Teach Yourself C in 21 Days, by Peter Aitken & Bradley L. Jones, Fifth Edition, 2000, First Printing, October 1999) and Teach Yourself C++ in 21 Days, by Jesse Liberty, Third Edition, 1999, First Printing, February 1999. As regards the style and content of both books, there is a great deal to praise. My impression is that the three authors are not only skilled programmers but also experienced teachers.

Before buying these books I had already read another course about C programming, but had been confused by it. However, after reading the book by Mr Aitken & Mr Jones, I realised that the course which I had previously read had merely been explained badly, with the various concepts of C programming being introduced in the wrong order and without sufficient detail. Reading the Aitken/Jones book made the C language appear relatively simple as the authors offer a coherent and ideal introduction to the subject.
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