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Great WPF Book

On this page:

As I've mentioned off and on I've been boning up on WPF for about a month now. I'd though I'd pass on my thoughs on the book I've enjoyed reading and working through:

Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed (WPF) (Unleashed)
by Adam Nathan
published Dec. 2006


This book rocks - seriously. Both for content as well as for the book format which is one of the nicest tech book publishing jobs I've seen in a while. I'm almost through the whole thing and there's not one bad chapter in the whole book (which is rare for me <s>).

Adam's writing style is easy to follow and laid out in a way that makes it a great book to read cover to code or use as reference once you get going. The book is full of tips and notes and anecdotes which are insightful and provide important information in a way that stands out highlighting important points. WPF is no easy topic to digest in a short period of time, but this book seems to hit the right pace between complexity and keeping things understandable and readable. I've looked at 3 different WPF books (Petzold's which I found horrible, Chris Andersons which is ok) and this one by far is the best one. Unlike the others this book follows along logically in a way that makes sense me. The book covers a ton of information and content but it never becomes overbearing - i never felt overwhelmed by the comlpexity of WPF. All the samples are small enough to digest without a half an hour of analysis while not being too simplistic. Tough mix to get right...

In addition to content of the book is printed in full color. All code samples use syntax highlighting and all the screen shots are full color - an important aspect in a WPF book perhaps. Notes and comments are also highlighted very nicely to make information stand out making great use of the color. The book just feels nice on the eyes. It's amazing what color can do for a tech book - which traditionally are in B&W. If Sams is publishing all their books this way I'll be looking at SAMS books more closely because this really does make a difference in readability of code. If you don't believe me dig out Petzold's WPF book which has not a single picture and reams of B&W code listings...

Actually, this book came highly recommended from several people at the MVP summit this year. I ran into Mark Miller one night with this book under his arm and one look at the book and reading through a few pages was all it took.

Anyway, if you're looking for a great WPF book this is probably it. 'nuff brown-nosing for no good reason ( see I CAN be positive when I dig somethin' <s>)...

Posted in WPF  

The Voices of Reason


# DotNetSlackers: Great WPF Book

Doug Dodge
April 24, 2007

# re: Great WPF Book

Thanks for the note on the book Rick. I have been wanting to learn this stuff and based upon your recommendation and those of the various folks on the Sams web page, order the book a couple days ago.

Rick Strahl
April 28, 2007

# re: Great WPF Book

Wow, there's a big splurge of other entries popping up in regards to Adam's book. Most of them don't have much nice to say about Petzold's book either.

Jeff Atwood:

Scott Mitchell:


Will Dougherty
July 27, 2007

# re: Great WPF Book

Thanks for all the great articles and I agree on "Unleashed". I have both that book and the Pro WPF by Matthew MacDonald. Both are excellent but I find myself consistantly reaching for Pro WPF first. It has more thorough coverage, warnings about quirks (which have saved me HUGE grief), and a great section on Flow Documents that Unleashed barely touches.


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