REVIEW - C & C++ Code Capsules - A Guide for Practitioners

Title:

C & C++ Code Capsules - A Guide for Practitioners

Author:

Chuck Allison

ISBN:

0135917859

Publisher:

Prentice Hall (1998)

Pages:

570pp

Reviewer:

Francis Glassborow

Reviewed:

October 1998

Rating:

★★★★★

Are you serious about C++? Do you think you are already a C++ programmer? If the answer to both questions is 'yes' then I think you should invest some time studying this book. A chapter a week for the next five months should be about right.

I am always picking at titles because I think it important that they convey the right sense. It is the title that will cause a potential reader to pull a book from the shelf to examine more closely. I think this one is wrong. Certainly the C should be omitted because the only C here is in the context of C++, you would have to be primarily a C++ programmer to want this book. That is my only adverse comment on this book. Oh, there is one other comment, the title does not have enough of the 'buy me' flavour.

The author should be well known to regular readers of The C/C++ Users Journal as he is both a consulting editor of that magazine and a regular contributor.

This is a book for those who already program in C++ with a degree of competence. Take this book and open it anywhere and start reading, unless you are up there with the Dan Saks' and Scott Meyers' of this world you will learn something useful. Yes, of course you will be able to criticise, a few more throw specifications might have been nice and you might argue that there is another way of doing some things but my point is that these are expert comments.

A bad book is easy to review in the sense that you do not have to do more than instance a few exemplars of its rottenness and the reader will get the point. No one expects an exhaustive list of all the faults. Good books are much harder to review because the reviewer keeps seeing new things to highlight. You will enjoy the author's interview of Bjarne Stroustrup that kicks the book off. Appendix A includes an almost complete list of keywords (I'll excuse the absence of export, but why did he forget

register
and
for
?). In between there is a wealth of example code and explanations (20 chapters, ranging from 'A Better C' which includes a table listing 73 keywords - only missing the late coming
export
- 'to Dynamic Memory Management')

Are you serious about C++? Do you think you are already a C++ programmer? If the answer to both questions is 'yes' then I think you should invest some time studying this book. A chapter a week for the next five months should be about right.

At the end of the book the author gives two reading lists, one for C which lists seven books (I think I would add a few more) and The C++ Practitioner's Booklist where he lists eleven titles. I would agree with every one of his choices (and his comments). However I think that I would happily add the current book to make it a round dozen.


Book cover image courtesy of Open Library.