Title: jQuery in Action
Author: Bear Bibeault & Yehuda Katz
Year: 2008 (Old Edition)
For: For developers who want to maximize their usage of jQuery.
First a little aside: I read an old edition of the book because that’s what my library had. It was written in 2008, one year before ES5 was standardized, and has since been rereleased in the 2015 edition. It was also a misprint and came with two chapter 4s, 5s, and 6s; a fun surprise when lumbering through this book.
Past the initial history lesson and selector overview, the chapters each address a set of related jQuery methods in this order: changing element properties and content, the jQuery event model, animation and effects, jQuery utilities, and jQuery’s Ajax control. Also included is a chapter on authoring plugins and a chapter on popular plugins (Form, Dimensions, Live Query, and UI). In my opinion, the most useful of these were the selectors and Ajax chapters as they were informative beyond the usage of jQuery and alone make the book worth flipping through.
The book is very, very dry despite the authors trying to spice it up with the occasional funny aside. There’s really not any opportunities provided to code along with a project and this makes the book read more like a reference manual. However there are regular “Labs” that the authors have made available as downloads (and online) that allow the reader to test out various functions; similar functions are usually bundled together in a single lab to compare their effectiveness.
This book is difficult to go through straight and should probably only be approached casually with a specific problem to solve. My biggest complaint in regards to the format of this book (besides the misprint) is that every page seems to have a function breakdown or an options table or a diagram or a lab or an aside. These distractions would be better placed as footnotes or as an appendix so as to permit a distraction-less reading experience.