The Amazon description for this book says that "David Powers, will teach readers how to progress from designing static websites to building dynamic websites in Adobe Dreamweaver CS5." That's an ambitious goal to promise you'll go from zero dynamic experience to becoming competent building a database driven website. In addition, one assumes that you are going to learn how to do this with Dreamweaver CS5 because it's in the title! I was shocked to find only one short lesson in the book on using the easy to use, built-in, coding free Dreamweaver features for integrating a database with your website. A more appropriate title would be "A very short intro to PHP & mySQL. Using the Zend Framework with Dreamweaver CS5."
Mr. Powers gives justifiable criticism to the limited built-in database features of Dreamweaver CS5 and then abruptly changes course to showing you how to acquire, install and continue development using the Zend Framework. The majority of the book is devoted to development with the Zend Framework. Quote from the book: "The 'minimal' version of Zend Framework 1.10 consists of more than 2,700 files in nearly 500 folders, and is more than 22mb in size." Great, just what a beginner needs to tackle. I'm an experienced web developer creating my first database driven website. I've successfully used ONLY the built-in features of Dreamweaver CS5 for my client. Are these DW features limited? Sure, but they are more than sufficient for many websites.
To create a dynamic website with a database you first are going to have to become fluent in PHP and mySQL before you go any further. Mr. Powers skimps on these topics devoting only 30+ pages each to PHP and mySQL. There are hundreds of pages devoted to learning Zend Framework and how to use it with Dreamweaver. Zend Framework is massive system. You should first learn how to use Dreamweaver without ZF. It's possible you don't need anything else. If you do need more horsepower, Zend Framework is only one of several products you should consider.
Let me share and recommend the path I used to go from static website developer to an entry level builder of websites with databases:
1. Get fluent in PHP and mySQL. You're not going to be successful without this as bedrock. This can be accomplished with a single book, no prior programming experience required: Build Your Own Database Driven Web Site Using PHP & MySQL.
2. Learn and try out the included database features in Dreamweaver CS5. Make sure you are fluent in PHP and mySQL first. The Dreamweaver database features are of little use to you without that knowledge. Part Six of Dreamweaver CS5: The Missing Manual has four chapters, 200+ pages with downloadable tutorials, all devoted to Dreamweaver database features and their implementation. You won't be disappointed. The author of Missing Manual clearly and repeatedly points out the limitations of the Dreamweaver database features. If you find these behaviors will limit your applications, then you can move up to Zend, Smarty Templates or other db augmentation systems based on your specific needs.