Python is a widely-used programming language known for its versatility and usage for fast development and debugging. If you are a programming enthusiast, learning Python can be an excellent addition to your skillset. Basic knowledge and functionality are important, and books can be a great resource for learning Python essentials. There are numerous books for both beginners and advanced learners interested in Python.
This article lists some of the best introductory Python books to help you build a strong foundation in Python from the very scratch.
Best Books For Beginners To Master Python Programming
Here is a list of some of the best books on Python for beginners with no previous programming knowledge or experience:-
1. Python Crash Course
By Eric Matthes (No Starch Press, 2016)
Python Crash Course is an excellent book for beginners and Python enthusiasts to take their first step in the field. It starts with a simple walkthrough into Python basics, including the Pythonic elements, data structures, and how to work with variables, tuples, numbers, strings, and lists. Everything is covered precisely, from logical tests and If statements to dictionaries. The first part covers user input, functions, file handling, classes, and code testing, along with the topics above. This book is organised, well-written and has various exercises to practise Python skills.
2. Head-First Python, 2nd edition
By Paul Barry (O’Reilly, 2016)
Head-First Python offers a user-friendly book for beginners with many illustrations and examples. Instead of a tedious text-heavy approach, the visually elaborate format engages young readers. The book starts with a Python tour by delving into lists and their uses. It further explores modules, file handling and errors. The second half of the book teaches you how to create an application to engage with the website of your creation. Here, you will be taught useful things like wrangling data, handling user input, etc.
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3. Invent Your Own Computer Games with Python, 4th edition
By Al Sweigart (No Starch, 2017)
This book is designed for game designers interested in developing with Python. You will learn Python programming basics via the exercises on applications that primarily emphasise making games. It begins with a Python shell, the REPL loop, and a “Hello, Game!” script. Further, it delves into creating a simple number guessing game, including type conversion, flow control, Boolean data, and random numbers. The book aims to teach Python concepts through games and encourages putting them to practice for evolved skills.
4. Think Python: How to Think Like a Computer Scientist, 2nd edition
By Allen B. Downey (O’Reilly, 2015)
Think Python follows a serious but user-friendly and easy-to-learn approach, specifically designed to extend serious level coding and an expert coder-like mindset. Although not as fun-filled as the previous books, it is well organised linearly to focus on basic Python programming through straightforward language and comprehensive explanation.
5. Effective Computation in Physics: Field Guide to Research with Python
By Anthony Scopatz, Kathryn D. Huff (O’Reilly, 2015)
This is a reliable learning resource for beginner Python learners to get a great Python reference with plenteous samples and exercises. The book is divided into four sections:
- Getting it Started: Focuses on the basics of Python programming, including topics like bash command-line, strings, operators, variables, logic, containers and flow regulation.
- Getting it Done: Focuses on the data-centric part of Python that scientists, data scientists and engineers refer to.
- Getting it Right: Focuses on overcoming any challenges faced while working with Python.
- Getting it Out There: Final section focuses on communication with the consumers of your code.
6. Real Python Course, Part 1
By Real Python Team (Real Python, 2017)
Real Python course is one of the best introductory books for Python comprehension. It is a mix of explanatory texts, coding examples, and review exercises. There are ample review exercises to help you apply everything you learn immediately.
It starts with clear instructions for installing and running Python on your computer, following which you get a brief overview of data types. The book will offer you a good sense of what Python stands for by playing around with applicable class methods, functions and loops, conditional logic, lists and dictionaries, and the like.
Best Intermediate and Advanced Books On Python
These books contain advanced Python knowledge directed toward people with prior Python knowledge who want to sharpen their coding skills. They are as follows:-
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7. Fluent Python: Clear, Concise, and Effective Programming
By Luciano Ramalho (O’Reilly, 2014)
People with solid Python basics who want to elevate their skills will thoroughly enjoy this book. Fluent Python is also a great reference book for experienced programmers of a different language who want to learn, “How do I do <x> in Python?” Although it covers many introductory topics, it goes in-depth to cover this language’s overlooked and more nuanced features. It has examples of code on nearly every page with helpful descriptions making the book pretty comprehensive.
8. Effective Python: 59 Ways to Write Better Python
By Brett Slatkin (Addison-Wesley, 2015)
This book is a compilation of 59 independent articles based on the fundamental Python for teaching the best Pythonic practices, its lesser-known functionalities, and the built-in features. The topics begin with simple concepts like determining the Python in use and end with more complex and overlooked topics such as identifying memory leaks.
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9. Python Cookbook, 3rd. Edition
By David Beazley & Brian K. Jones (O’Reilly, 3rd edition, 2013)
This book stands out for complex concepts, unlike most code cookbooks designed for illustrating simpler ways of performing daily tasks. Every code recipe comes with a comprehensive code solution and the author’s discussion regarding the solution in this book.
Every recipe begins with a clear problem statement and then directly jumps into a solution using modern, idiomatic Python 3 code, data structures and patterns. Its engaging and sophisticated examples make it one of the top Python books for advanced programmers.
10. Python Tricks: A Buffet of Awesome Python Features
By Dan Bader (dbader.org, 2017)
The book focuses on the lesser-known but best Python features to understand this programming language better. There are 43 subsections covering different concepts known as Python Tricks. They are discussed in an easy-to-digest code, illustrated to help for precise grasp. The e-version of this book comes with 12 Bonus Videos about these concepts and is available for purchase. They are 11 minutes long and are perfect for a glance over concepts.
Learning Python can be the next best thing for programming enthusiasts and game developers in the current marketing following its emerging popularity and versatile interface. To begin a good career in programming, you need to have a strong foundation and basic skill sets. You can enrol yourself into the Master of Science in Data Science course from upGrad and take your career a step further.
Q1: Can Python be mastered in 3 years?
Answer: Generally, it takes around two to six months to learn Python fundamentals, but developing mastery in this language might require years.
Q2: Is Python worth learning in recent times?
Answer: Python is worth learning because it is suitable for the needs of many organisations. It helps to run operations smoothly. Python’s extensive use in various new big and small platforms recently makes it significant to learn for programmers.
Q3: How does Python differ from Java?
Answer: Rather than production code, Python comprises more experimentation. Java is statically typed and compiled, whereas Python is dynamically typed and interpreted. Java has faster runtime and makes debugging easy. Python is user-friendly and comparatively easier to read.