On Books

November 30, 2008

I’m very much a book person, I have been ever since college. You might think this would be the case as I write books for a living, but for many people there can be a big discrepancy between what you do and what you like to do. So, not only do I write books, but I love reading books; reading anything, really.

All that being said, although I do read computer books by other authors, even on the same subjects as I’ve written about, I just don’t think it appropriate for me to discuss or review these other works. I may make an occasional comment here or there, but generally I avoid doing so. There are two reasons why: first, I have an inherent conflict of interest, particularly when it comes to books on similar subjects as mine (i.e., competing books). Second, while everyone has different expectations of a book, as a person that makes much of his living doing technical writing, my expectations are likely more particular than most.

I mention all this because I often am asked as to what other books a person should consider. I can provide recommendations–clearly biased–regarding my own books but not for any others. Maybe I can offer up the occasional “this one sells well” or “I’ve heard good things about” but I do want to avoid full-on reviews and any official thumbs up/down. However, if you are curious about other books, you can post a message in the forums so that others may chip in with their own opinions.