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Top 20 Best Python Books for Beginners & Advanced Coders 
Table of Contents
Python is a general-purpose interpreted programming language used for web development, machine learning, and complex data analysis. Python is a perfect language for beginners as it is easy to learn and understand.
As the popularity of the language is soaring, the opportunities in Python programming are amplifying. If you wish to learn Python programming, books can be a great source of learning. Books provide you with the ability to learn at your own pace.
Here are the top 10 Python books for beginners and advanced programmers recommended by the Python community. These books help programmers of all skill levels, from amateurs to code wizards. The list also includes a few free Python books for beginners.
2022’s Best Python Books
- Best Python book for beginners: Python Crash Course
- Best free Python book: A Byte of Python
- Best Python book for advanced users: Fluent Python: Clear, Concise, and Effective Programming
- Best book for practical learning: Learn Python the Hard Way (3rd Edition)
- Best book for job interview prep: Elements of Programming Interviews in Python: The Insiders’ Guide
- Best Python book for kids: Python for Kids
Best Python Books for Beginners
1. Best Python Book for Beginners: Python Crash Course
'Python Crash Course' by Eric Matthews is a fast-paced and comprehensive introduction to Python language for beginners who wish to learn Python programming and write useful programs. The book aims to get you up to speed fast enough and have you writing real programs in no time at all. This book is also for programmers who have a vague understanding of the language and wish to brush up their knowledge before trying their hands-on Python programming. As you work through the book, you learn libraries and tools such as Pygame, Matplotlib, Plotly, and Django and work with data to create interactive visualizations. You also know about the idea behind 2D games, to develop and deploy web applications. It is one of the best books to learn Python suggested by Python Programmers.
This 544-page book is dissected into two parts. The first part of the book discusses Python programming basics and sheds light on concepts such as dictionaries, lists, loops, and classes. You understand working with a Python program and learn to write clean and readable code and create interactive programs. The part ends with teaching to test your code before you add it to a project.
The second half of the book follows a practical approach. It tests your knowledge by presenting three different projects:
- Space Invaders-inspired arcade game.
- A set of data visualizations with Python's handy libraries.
- A simple web app you can deploy online.
It is one of the best international selling Python books that teaches Python 3 to everyone, including technically inclined beginners and liberal art majors, and geeks alike. The books give you step-by-step instructions and walk you through each program, teaching you to write programs quickly and efficiently in Python. The author, AI Sweigart, also challenges his readers with updated practice projects at the end of each chapter.
You will learn Python's basics and explore rich library modules for performing tasks like scraping data from websites, reading PDF and word documents, and automating clicking and typing tasks. The second edition of the book includes an additional brand-new chapter on input validation and tutorials on automating Gmail and Google Sheets, plus tips on automatically updating CSV files.
Apart from the new chapter, you also learn to create programs that effortlessly perform good feats of automation to search for text in a file or across multiple files, create, update, move, and rename files and folders, search the web and download online content, update and format data in Excel spreadsheets of any size, fill out online forms and more.
The author of the book, Mark Lutz, gives a comprehensive, in-depth introduction to the core Python language based on his training course. The latest version of the book encourages you to write efficient, high-quality code. This is also one of the best books to learn Python. The book is for everyone who wants to learn and excel in Python; from beginners to professional developers, anyone can read and practice this book. You will explore Python’s major built-in object types, such as numbers, lists, and dictionaries. You will also learn code redundancy and organize statements. The book also introduces you to OOPs concepts in Python by diving into classes.
Finally, general programming concepts like exception handling, and development tools are also covered in this book. The book also covers Python tools such as decorators, descriptors, metaclasses, and Unicode processing for advanced readers and programmers.
‘Head-First Python’ by Paul Barry is the best book to learn python, a quick and easy fix for you if you wish to learn the basics of Python programming without having to slog through counterproductive tutorials and books. The book helps you in gaining a quick grasp of the fundamentals of Python programming and working with built-in functions and data structures. The book then moves on to help you build your web application, exception handling, data wrangling, and other concepts. The head first Python makes use of a visual format rather than a text-based approach, helping you to see and learn better.
The author is Paul Barry, a lecturer at the Institute of Technology, Carlow, Ireland. Before entering the academic world, he worked for over a decade in the IT industry. He is the author of individual well-known programming books, such as Programming the Network with Perl, Head First Programming, and Head First Python.
The book Learn Python Quickly: A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Learning Python, Even If You’re New to Programming is a fantastic choice for — you guessed it — beginners. As one of the most popular programming languages around, Python is also a language that many people from all walks of life want to start learning. For this reason, Code Quickly has created a book targeted toward the absolute beginners.
In this book, you can establish solid foundational knowledge in Python. Once you’ve gotten past the fundamentals, you can then move on to some of the more intermediate and advanced topics. There’s no need to feel intimidated — thankfully, the book is written in a clear way where there are simple explanations provided so you can follow along more easily.
Learn Python Quickly: A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Learning Python also includes coding exercises (and their solutions, so you can check if you’re correct). At the end of the book, there are two Python projects that you can do to bring all the lessons you’ve learned together and wrap up with some hands-on experience. There are also some files with source code that you can continually refer to. You can run these files right on your own computer.
6. Best Book for Job Interview Prep: Elements of Programming Interviews in Python: The Insiders' Guide
The book challenges you with a collection of 250 problems to test your Python skills. The problems are representative of interview questions that are asked at leading software companies. The problems are illustrated with 200 figures, 300tested programs, and 150 additional variants followed by detailed solutions. The book further mentions a summary of the non-technical aspects of interviewing tips on negotiating the best offer and guiding the best way to use EPI. Summary of data structures and algorithms are also provided to brush up your knowledge.
The book is designed in a series of chapters on basic and advanced data structures. Each chapter starts with a brief introduction, case study, top tips, and a review of the essential library methods, finally followed by broad and thought-provoking problems.
Learn Python in One Day and Learn It Well by Jamie Chan is now in its second edition, with the addition of lessons in object-oriented programming. It was written for the absolute beginners who have literally no knowledge of Python whatsoever. The aim is to help students learn Python fast enough that they can start coding the basics in one day.
This book breaks concepts down into easily digestible and simple steps that even newbies can follow. There are carefully-chosen examples to help illustrate Python-related concepts that can help you to understand things easier. Topics are also selected thoughtfully, ensuring that learning is possible in a somewhat linear way without going on confusing tangents.
Jamie Chan knows that the best way to learn is to do, and that philosophy is applied to this book as well. At the end of Learn Python in One Day and Learn It Well, there is a project that learners can do that involves all the concepts that were previously learned from the book.
If you’ve never written a single line of code before, the prospect of learning might seem quite intimidating or even daunting. Thankfully, the book Python for Beginners: Learn Python Programming with No Coding Experience in 7 Days by Santos Ozoemena is an excellent way to get started.
The book was written for those who want to be part of the programming world or find a career as a programmer. With the knowledge that Python is one of the easiest (and most popular) programming languages out there, Santos Ozoemena aims to provide the right guidance to make learning Python a “walk in the park.”
Ozoemena’s book ambitiously aims to teach students how to master Python within only one week. To help make learning easier, the book guides learners step by step through all the concepts and processes of coding in Python.
Free Python Books for Beginners
‘Learning with Python’ by Allen Downey, Jeff Elkner, and Chris Meyers is an introduction to Python programming and using the language to create excellent real-world programs. The book divides into 20 sections and also includes a contributors list and a way forward. The initial sections discuss the basics of programming and what makes up a program. Then it moves on to basic Python concepts such as variables, functions, conditionals, fruitful functions, and iteration. Towards the end, the book discusses the core concepts such as objects, inheritance, lists, stacks, queues, trees, and debugging.
The book is available for free in a variety of formats, which include PDF, Postscript, Gzipped Rar, and HTML. Users are free to download and print these files as the book has a license under the GNU Free Documentation License. The book translated into other languages such as Spanish, Italian, German, and Czech, is available for download.
10. Best Free Python Book: A Byte of Python
‘A Byte of Python’ by C.H. Swaroop is a free best book on Python programming to guide the beginner audience to an understanding of the Python language. The book mainly discusses the Python 3 version but can assist you in adapting to the older versions of the language. The book is available in over 26 languages, including Turkish, Swedish, French, Chinese, German, Spanish, Russian, Ukrainian, Portuguese, and Korean. The translations have been provided by active community members who vigorously work to keep the edits going on as the book is updated.
The book initiates with an introduction to what the book is about. It also considers the demands of the readers concerning dedication. Then it describes Python and how it has emerged as one of the most influential languages in the programming world. It then moves on to Python concepts and describes them in detail, along with examples at every step. It culminates with how you can continue learning Python after reading this book and leaves you with a problem to solve, testing your skills even at the last step.
Best Python Programming Books for Advanced Programmers
Many commercial applications and projects have employed machine learning as an integral ingredient, and the number of applications doing so has only risen over the years. This book by Sarah Guido and Andreas C. Muller teaches you how to use Python programming language to build your machine learning solutions. As the amount of data usage increases with the second, the limitation to machine learning applications is only our imagination.
Throughout this book, you learn about the steps required to create a rich machine-learning application using Python and sci-kit-learn library. The book introduces you to the fundamental concepts and uses of machine learning before moving on to the pros and cons of popular machine learning algorithms. You also learn about the advanced methods for model evaluation and the concept of pipelines, which is for encapsulating your workflow and chaining models. In conclusion, the book provides suggestions to help you improve your data science skills.
12. Best Advanced Python Book: Fluent Python: Clear, Concise, and Effective Programming
‘Fluent Python’ by Luciano Ramalho is a hands-on guide that helps you learn how to write useful Python code by using the most neglected yet best features of the language. The author takes you through the features and libraries of the language and helps you make the code shorter, faster, and readable.
The book covers various concepts, including Python data models, data structures, functions as objects, object-oriented idioms, control flow, and metaprogramming. Using this book, advanced Python programmers learn about Python 3 and how to become proficient in this version of the language. The author is Luciano Ramalho, a Web Developer who has worked with some of the most significant news portals in Brazil using Python and has his own Python training company.
‘Python Cookbook’ by David Beazley and Brian K. Jones helps you master your programming skills in Python 3 or help you update older Python 2 code. This cookbook is filled with recipes tried and tested with Python 3.3 is the ticket for experienced Python programmers who wish to take the approach to modern tools and idioms rather than just standard coding. The book has complete recipes for a variety of topics, covering Python language and its uses, along with tasks common to a large number of application domains.
Some of the topics covered in the book are strings, data structures, iterators, functions, classes, modules, packages, concurrency, testing, debugging, and exceptions. Throughout the book, the recipes mentioned above presuppose that you have the necessary knowledge to understand the topics in the book. Each recipe contains a sample code the reader can use in their projects. The code follows a discussion about the working of the code and why the solution works.
‘Programming Python’ by Mark Lutz is ideal for programmers who have understood the fundamentals of Python programming and are ready to learn how to use their skills to get real work done. This book includes in-depth tutorials on various application domains of Python, such as GUIs, the Web, and system administration. The book also discusses how the databases use the language, text processing, front-end scripting layers, networking, and much more.
The book explains the commonly used tools, language syntax, and programming techniques through a brief yet precise approach. The book has many examples that show the correct usage and common idioms. The book also digs into the language as a software development tool, along with multiple examples illustrated particularly for that purpose.
15. Best Book for Practical Learning: Learn Python the Hard Way (3rd Edition)
'Learn Python 3 the Hard Way' by Zed A. Shaw is a collection of 52 brilliantly crafted exercises. The book is perfect for total beginners who have not coded before, junior developers, and professionals who need to brush up their skills. The book requires you to learn practical coding by practicing exercises and fixing problems to understand the problems better. The author even shows you how to break, fix, and debug your code to give you the coding flavor.
The book further discusses various topics such as basic mathematics, variables, strings, files, loops, program design, and data structures, among many others. Learning Python by doing exercises helps understand the software's working, the structure of a well-written program, and how to avoid and find common mistakes in code using some tricks that professional programmers have up their sleeves.
Best Python Books for Kids
16. Best Python Book for Children: Python for Kids
Author: Jason R. Briggs
Despite the title, this is a fun book for all ages that provides a clear, easy-to-follow introduction to Python programming. The content is easy to understand, the examples are clearly illustrated and straightforward. The book provides a detailed guide to installing Python to the system followed by using Python Shell as a simple calculator. The book is a solid guide for getting a good foundation in the basics.
- Arithmetic Operators
- Turtle Library
- Conditional Statements
- Modules and More
Age: 9 -12
The books intrigue all the kids to build software whether they have learned block language like Scratch or have done no programming at all. The grocery reference section at the back of the book is very helpful for kids to learn and study even for their future projects
It teaches the following:
- Downloading and installing the python
- Writing and Saving Programs
Author: Mike McGrath
Age: Middle School and Up
The author has done a fantastic job of presenting coding concepts in small, comprehensible chunks. It is not exactly for children but middle school students with some experience in a language like scratch would enjoy learning from it and understand it well.
Author: Adrienne Tacke
Coding For Kids: Python: Learn to Code with 50 Awesome Games and Activities is a promising book by author Adrienne Tacke. Written for younger aspiring coders age 10+, the book aims to be the perfect introduction a kid could get to the coding language Python.
Beyond teaching kids the basics of coding in Python, the book also shows children how to create their own apps/games to keep things fun, engaging, and exciting. On top of that, the book has plenty of interactive lessons that children can more easily follow, thanks to the many visual examples available. Kids even learn how to debug their code to figure out what may be causing issues, if there are any.
Author: Sheena Vaidyanathan
Age: 10 - 12
Creative Coding in Python: 30+ Programming Projects in Art, Games, and More is a book designed to help children ages 10-12 to learn Python. Sheena Vaidyanathan created the book with the aim to teach kids the fundamentals of programming. The book demonstrates how to code in Python through more than thirty fun and exciting projects that even kids can perform. Foundational knowledge is taught through flowcharts, illustrations, and pseudocode to help kids understand more easily.
When the fundamentals have been learned, kids can then learn to do projects like geometric art, chatbots (conversational programs), dice games, interactive fiction (“create your own adventure”-type games), and even some arcade games.
For teachers or parents looking for some guidance on helping kids learn, the book’s website, CreativeCodingInPython.com offers plenty of help.
That wraps our article on the best Books for Python. It is hard to say which one is the best Python book as it entirely depends on your choice. Maybe you could try free books at first if you are a beginner to see if the language keeps you interested to learn.
If you are an advanced Python learner you might want to try out the book Crash Course in Python to brush up your skills.
Have you read some of the books already? Which book did you find the most helpful? Would you like to recommend any other book? Let us know in the comments.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is the best book for Python beginners?
If you’re just starting out with Python, the section on the best Python books for beginners can help you find the right one for you. However, we can also recommend Python Crash Course as an ideal Python book for beginners thanks to the way it handles everything, from the fundamentals to the more complex topics.
Which one is the best book for Python?
The answer to this question really depends on your goals for learning Python. If you just want to learn it from scratch and go into an eventual career in web development, you can look into Head-First Python (2nd Edition).
If you would like to eventually move into artificial intelligence and machine learning, consider Introduction to Machine Learning with Python: A Guide for Data Scientists.
And if you would like to test your knowledge or prepare for job interviews, you can try Elements of Programming Interviews in Python: The Insiders’ Guide or Learn Python the Hard Way.
Can you learn Python from a book?
Absolutely, yes! However, one problem you might find yourself running into if you are learning from a book is that it may not suit your learning style. If you prefer learning from a video or from someone showing you what to do, you may prefer a video-style course instead.
What is the best free Python book?
A Byte of Python is certainly a contender for the best book for learning Python, at least when it comes to free books. It is translated into more than 26 languages, making it more accessible to people worldwide.
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