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on 19 October 2013
I have written a chapter-by-chapter review of this book on "www i-programmer info" the first part of this review follows:

This book aims to provide SQL developers with knowledge to get the most out of SQL Server 2012. How does it fare?

From the book's title I expected an in-depth discussion of the various aspects of the T-SQL programming language from a SQL Server 2012 perspective. Even the blurb on the publisher's website says "Pro T-SQL 2012 Programmer's Guide is every developer's key to making full use of SQL Server 2012's powerful, built-in Transact-SQL language." However, this book is NOT a discussion about T-SQL specifically, rather it is a guide to SQL Server 2012's functionality from a developer's viewpoint. The book's title is misleading.

The book is aimed at SQL developers wanting to get up to speed on functionality in the later releases of SQL Server, and also those developers coming to SQL Server from other platforms. So it is not an introductory book. Read on for a chapter-by-chapter exploration of the topics covered.

Chapter 1 Foundations of T-SQL
The chapter provides an overview of how SQL has developed, its basic structure, and the importance of coding style. A brief summary of the development of Codd's relational model is given. The difference between declarative (e.g. SQL) and imperative (e.g. C) languages is highlighted - i.e. WHAT to do as opposed to HOW to do it. The basic constituents of SQL are outlined in discussing schemas, tables, indexes, stored procedures, user-defined functions, 3-value logic, etc. This is followed by a review of the importance of coding style and formatting. This is a good overview of where SQL came from and its major components.

Chapter 2 Tools of the Trade...

From a developer's perspective, I found this book an enjoyable read, with lots of useful example code, having wide-ranging and in-depth coverage of the major SQL Server features. It will certainly get developers from previously versions of SQL Server or from other platforms up-to-speed, but be aware it is not a book for beginners. Although the book relates to SQL Server 2012, it covers features introduced from 2005 onwards, for example the use of the CLR hasn't really changed since 2005.

The summaries and exercises at the end of each chapter are good for revision and understanding. Most of the references for further information tend to refer to Apress's own titles, this is perhaps understandable from the publisher's perspective, but wider references would have been useful.

As a book solely about T-SQL 2012, I would award a rating of 2.5, as a book about SQL Server 2012 from a SQL developer's perspective, I would rate it 4.5. Recommended.
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on 18 October 2014
The coverage and depth in this book do not go beyond the material found in Microsoft’s official product documentation, e.g., ‘Books Online’ (BOL) on MSDN. What this book adds to the material found in BOL is a good structure, and that makes it a well-written, comprehensive, intermediate level textbook with very similar content as the official product documentation.

It is suitable for developers who need a first overview of a subject area, but in many cases the book will only be a starting point to make a decision whether a technology may be useful in solving a problem or not, because it does not offer an in-depth discussion of subjects.
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on 18 December 2014
The content within the book is very good. However, the print quality could have been improved. The font size and the pictures although legible, are not great as it puts additional pressure on eyes while reading the book, especially for a spectacled person like me. I have deducted 2 stars because of print quality only. From an advanced knowledge perspective, this book is excellent.
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