Customer Reviews


78 Reviews
5 star:
 (12)
4 star:
 (9)
3 star:
 (2)
2 star:
 (15)
1 star:
 (40)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better ones I have seen
I have been writing SQL for a few years, and I have almost every book on TSQL. When I glanced over this book, I thought it was pretty good, but I waited until I saw the reviews on Amazon.com to get a second opinion. As the reviews were mostly negative, I did not buy the book back then.
Then some time later and with some spare money in hand, I got to the bookstore and...
Published on July 2 2002 by sql3642

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars I found the book to be useful
After reading some of the negative reviews on here, I almost didn't buy this book. I'm a Transact SQL beginner, though, so whether a book with "Advanced" in the title isn't actually advanced doesn't matter to me. I think there's room for beginner books in the market, too.
I am a seasoned coder that just started a new job and needed to get up to speed on...
Published on March 17 2002 by Sarah Bonner


‹ Previous | 1 28 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

2.0 out of 5 stars Lots of good, more not-so-good, May 1 2004
By 
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
On the positive side, there are numerous interesting Transact SQL techniques demonstrated in this book. A couple of them have proved to be very useful to me. I like the exploration of different challenges people face with Transact SQL and the solutions the authors provide.
I also like the catalog nature of the book. APress is getting better at this with their books, and this one is pretty good as a reference.
On the negative side, the language is misued often in this book. As the old saying goes, "When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail." There are several problems attacked in this book that would be better solved with a language other than Transact SQL. It is simply the wrong tool. I could offer several examples, but the most obvious one would be the complex numbers discussion. I see others have mentioned this, too. Not only are complex numbers not best handled by Transact SQL, they cannot even be accurately handled by the language. You will quickly become the victim of rounding errors, performance problems, and other devils if you try something like this in production code.
Another negative is that authors don't write that well. I have come not to expect a lot from technical books, so I don't think this is that big of a deal. But I would have to say that the writing quality in this one is low even for technical books. For one thing, the two write completely differently and you can see the different styles contrasting in different sections of the book. Add to this the fact that neither style is particularly lucid or engaging, and you have a book that is an editor or two short of being cogent and readable.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A commentary on Critiques:, Feb. 16 2004
By 
Andrew J. Bradford (Frederick, MD United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
A common theme among the negative critiques, is the use of the word "Advanced" in the book's title. Personally, i think the authors should simply have chosen a different title, and half of the negative comments would have been subdued. (Something to signify the apparent intent of the authors, such as "An anthology of T-SQL", or "A Comprehensive Introduction to T-SQL" ...) "Advanced" of course is to some extent a product of one's own thinking, and experience. Another aspect to this subject of "Advanced" has to do with the totally hackneyed, over-worked use of the term "Guru." Someone / something can in fact be "Advanced", and NOT be in the realm of "Guru." This term is COMPLETELY over-used, and over-applied. There are in fact but a very FEW "Guru's" out there in the 'Real World' (Ken Henderson being one.) A Guru is a unique, creative combination of high native intelligence, tireless enthusiasm, and indeterminate hours of true, Hands-On Experience, with the product. A Guru can be identified as someone who ALWAYS seems to know more about the topic, no matter what he/she is asked or challenged with. (As an aside....a "Guru" is NOT always a great, or even good, author ... or, communicator to humans, in general ... although this particular talent definitely is advantageous!) In short, evaluate a product, such as a computer book, on its merits, applicability to the task at hand, and value to YOU. Take with a GIANT grain of salt, any negative critique(s) before choosing .... esp. those propagated from a SINGLE source masquerading as MULTIPLE people!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better ones I have seen, July 2 2002
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I have been writing SQL for a few years, and I have almost every book on TSQL. When I glanced over this book, I thought it was pretty good, but I waited until I saw the reviews on Amazon.com to get a second opinion. As the reviews were mostly negative, I did not buy the book back then.
Then some time later and with some spare money in hand, I got to the bookstore and this was the ONLY book on TSQL that I did not already own. So I caved in and bought it. This was a very wise move! The help given to me by this book has made it a more than worthwhile investement. I have over 10 SQL servers and have to maintain and write code for all of them. This books has been extraordinary help.
I you know very little of SQL, do not buy this book, get an intro book instead. But if you have "some" experience with SQL, then this is a great book to get deeper into TSQL. I will change the way you write code and make you a better TSQL developer.
Which leads me to wonder about the SQL capabilities of the writers of those negative reviews.... hum ;-)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Good Desktop Reference for Transact-SQL, April 1 2002
By 
Kevin Daugherty (Marysville, PA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I was a little surprised when I read some of the negative reviews on this book. It has become the most used book in my library of late and I find it very helpful and easy to use. The code examples are short, clear and to the point. The topics are well indexed and logically grouped, making it very easy to find examples of what I need to know. So many other books in this category are designed for either Database Administration or Developers embedding SQL in applications. This book is aimed at people who code SQL in MS SQL Server. It focuses on how to write the most optimized queries and gives practical tips that make it easier to write and debug SQL.
I am somewhere in between a Beginner and an Advanced user. I have been coding simple embedded SQL for 5 years as a VB developer and recently writing more complex stored procedures. This book has been the most practical SQL reference I have found, much more helpful than the online help. It is has not been a "waste of time" or "beginner level at best" for me. I have learned quite a bit about SQL from this book and I thought I was fairly knowledgeable before I read it.
Others in my department have also purchased this book and it has become the standard reference many of us use to answer SQL questions. If you are looking for a practical reference to common and advanced questions, you will find this book very useful.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars I found the book to be useful, March 17 2002
By 
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
After reading some of the negative reviews on here, I almost didn't buy this book. I'm a Transact SQL beginner, though, so whether a book with "Advanced" in the title isn't actually advanced doesn't matter to me. I think there's room for beginner books in the market, too.
I am a seasoned coder that just started a new job and needed to get up to speed on Transact SQL quickly, so I bought Henderson's Guru's Guide book and this one. I have already reviewed Henderson's book, so now I'll share my experiences with this one.
Having read through this book a couple of times now, I can say that I agree with some of the points some of the other readers have made. It's true that there are a lot of coding errors in the sample code. And it's true that the book doesn't always read very well. However, I still found the book to be useful. No, it's not up to par with Henderson's book, but that doesn't make it completely worthless. I'm not sorry I bought it.
I don't think you can have too many books on SQL Server, and this one has certainly proved useful to me personally. If you are trying to get your legs under you as far as Transact SQL goes, this is a good place to start.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, Feb. 19 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I've been thinking that they should have a certification system for computer book authors. It would help keep stuff like this off the market. I guess the authors have a different definition of Advanced than I do. To me, this is, at best, a beginner's book. The things the authors apparently think are advanced are little more than coding tricks that have appeared in lots of other books and magazine articles. If you are looking for something to teach you true T-SQL mastery, you will be disappointed. There's nothing approaching that here.
The real problem with this book is the same problem with half the computer books in print: they are written by people not qualified to be authors. I don't care if you have a Phd or if you know Kalen Delaney. Neither qualifies you to write technical books. What qualifies you to write technical books consists of two parts: 1) you must know the subject material at an expert level. Obviously, this isn't the case with either author. 2) You must be able to write well. The is _really_ not the case, trust me. I wish they had a test that people would have to pass to get a book published. In true APress tradition, we have a book that's not worth reading written by two people who had no business writing it in the first place.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1.0 out of 5 stars Authors need to earn their stripes, Feb. 10 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
After some [people] on the newsgroups recommended this book, I went and bought it. Frankly, I'm disappointed. There are whole topics left completely untouched. Are some pages missing or did you fellows forget to mention handling errors in Transact-SQL? It's kind of important, you know. Also, the book doesn't even begin to approach "Advanced", the laughable Foreword nothwithstanding.
I was puzzled that a couple of the guys on the newsgroups would recommend such a shipwreck of a book until it finally hit me. These guys are all buddies! They all know each other. What we have here is a little Mutual Admiration Society where Bob recommends Joe's work and Joe recommend's Bob's work and no one realizes that neither of them have any business recommending anything!
I get the sense that these authors spend too much time on the newsgroups and not enough actually using the product. For two guys that spend more time in a newsgroup reader than they do with the product, the prententious tone of the book is really inappropriate. Better start earning your stripes, guys. Technical authors should write from an abundance of experience, and surfing the newsgroups won't get you there.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1.0 out of 5 stars A big waste of money, Feb. 4 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
This book is neither practical nor advanced, despite the claims on the cover. One thing that becomes crystal clear from reading through the book is that neither of the authors is a Transact-SQL expert. We have one giving us (what he must think are) funny analogies having to do with meeting people with the same first name. Oh, that's hilarious. And informative, too. I'm so glad you thought to include that paragraph in your book instead of something more technical. I felt enlightened after I read it. Not.
I heard that some of blowhards on the newsgroups were recommending this book, so I got myself a copy. What a waste. I don't know where they get some of these authors. There isn't a bit of technical info in this book that you can't find elsewhere, mostly in the online documentation. For that alone, it gets a one star. I didn't buy the book to get a printed BOL.
Another problem is with the coding examples. There must be an error on nearly every other page. I don't expect the code in a book to be perfect, but I do expect most of it to run. Unfortunately, it doesn't.
A last problem is with the stuff they leave out. Where are the useful UDFs? Where's the coverage of query tuning? Why didn't you tell me about all the problems with Distributed Partitioned Views? I've had nothing but trouble with them. I put them in production because of books like this one only to discover that they have many prickly edges and really aren't ready for prime time.
I guess my final verdict is this: I wouldn't recommend this book if it was the last technical book on the planet. It's a horrible mess that wasted my time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1.0 out of 5 stars Another lame tech book, Jan. 12 2002
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
There's so much wrong with this book that I really don't know where to begin, but here's my top ten in no particular order:
1. It's written very, very poorly. Everything from silly, gradeschool analogies to terrible grammar, to convoluted explanations can be found in abundance. I literally laughed out loud at some of the horrendous prose the book serves up.
2. The book is loaded with errors. I've found so many I've quit counting.
3. The book is nowhere near advanced. Were that not in the title, I guess that would be permissible, but it is, so the book should live up to it.
4. Despite the subtitle on the back of the book, "Practical solutions to common T-SQL problems," the book is about as impractical as they come. Many of the techniques (when they work at all) are not practical in the real world. Handling complex numbers in T-SQL isn't practical, for example, because it's too slow and doesn't correct rounding errors. The authors never mention this.
5. The book is terribly uneven. You can tell multiple people wrote it. You find everything from differing code formatting styles, to different writing styles, to differing opinions on how to address a particular problem. These guys obviously don't know each other well and aren't yet on the same page.
6. Too much similarity to the BOL. There are far too many things that appear far to similar to the BOL. There are tables in the book, for example, that are virtually identical to their BOL counterparts. I didn't buy this book to get a printed version of the BOL. I get the BOL for free with the product and can print it if I want.
7. No originality. There's no technique in this book that I haven't seen in at least one other that predates it.
8. No deep insights. The book is nothing more than a hackneyed collection of code tricks that have appeared elsewhere. I want to know *how* the language works, not just see some code trick that some newsgrouper thought was neato.
9. Too much padding. There's far too much whitespace and padding in this book. Without the strangely formatted source code (which appears to be laid out to use as much page space as possible), the excessive whitespace, pictures, tables, etc., this book would be about half as long as it is. It brings to mind the old Wendy's commerical: "Where's the beef?!"
10. Horrendous organization. The book is all over the place in terms of topics. It makes no sense. It looks like a hodgepodge of things the authors thought might fill a book. It's a shame that such a mess was actually published.
There are some "books" that should not see the light of day. This is one of them. Save your bucks and get a real book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars I found this book to be excellent and forced much thought, Dec 10 2001
By 
Michael Hotek (mssqlserver.com United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I initially skimmed this book looking for highlights. I've referred many developers to a section or chapter in this book when they are trying to perform T-SQL gymnastics like unequal joins, locating missing data, understanding instead of triggers, etc. This isn't a book for beginners. Make sure you have a firm grasp of T-SQL and then give yourself time to read this book in chunks. Yes, I found some errors in the code samples. But, I don't blindly run code from a book. This is a book designed to teach you many finer points of T-SQL and apply them to real world problems. If the code doesn't work, apply what the authors are teaching you and rewrite it. Way too many people just dismiss it as "beneath them", "not advanced", "rehash of BOL", etc. I doubt any of them even put forth the effort required to understand what Tom and Itzik are trying to teach you. This is a book that will require you to think, but at the end of the road you will be miles ahead of your counterparts in your understanding of T-SQL. There isn't enough room for an exhaustive treatment, but the authors present T-SQL in a way that pushes you well beyond "memorize and regugitate" and certainly allows you to apply T-SQL in ways you would have thought were not possible. T-SQL is a simple language, but it is extremely complex in this simplicity. Thank you Itzik and Tom for deepening my understanding.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 28 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000
Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 by Tom Moreau (Paperback - Nov. 28 2000)
Used & New from: CDN$ 1.76
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews