This is a well written broad overview, more depth can be had by reference to the PHP documentation. I have read Several PHP books now but thought repetition of learning the basics again wouldn't do me any harm. Specifically the chapters on PDF creation and creating graphics dynamically were of interest. The writing style is generally clear and concise and the book is well laid out, but otherwise nothing really improves over any of the many other PHP books out there
The chapter on regular expressions is very well written and quite comprehensive. The reference section is actually quite large, taking up a large part of the book. The reference lists functions as they relate to the various default PHP extensions, and also as complete alphabetical listing, including function prototype's, return values and comments etc. This reference is certainly useful since it allows quick access to an overview of the various functions ,without getting bogged down in all the technical details.
I have left off one star since I was not able to find the code examples to download and there are not in fact that many of them. I think the book probably neglects lesser used functions in the main text, but the reference section makes up for this.
So in summary if you want a good reference then this could be for you. If you want a no-nonsense tutorial then it certainly ticks that box too. This book is a no nonsense easy to access reference, and a good way of perusing the functions that comprise PHP, with a view to memorising the most important ones.
Other books probably contain better examples and go into more depth. As I said in another of my reviews, you can also download the entire PHP reference manual. When you install the CHTML searchable version on your iPad it kind of trumps the reference section you will find in any book !
Text provides a good basis in which to learn this useful language. As usual a little programming experience is really a prerequisite but the text covers the language well with plenty of useful code fragment examples.