ASP.NET Core in Action, 2nd Ed (Manning)

Author: Andrew Lock
Publisher: Manning
Date:April 2021
Pages: 832
ISBN: 978-1617298301
Print: 1617298301
Audience: Developers interested in ASP.NET
Rating: 4
Reviewer: Ian Elliot
One big book to cover the one big alternative web tech.

And it is big. This book is a heavyweight at more than 800 pages and, yes, the technology really is this convoluted and variable. However, it has to be said that repetition accounts for a lot of the pages. I don't know what a "nutshell" approach to ASP.NET would be, but this isn't it. It also covers .NET 5 and we now have .NET 6, but this isn't something that should put you off as the changes are slight.


Part I is nine chapters in total and is a general introduction to basic ASP. The first chapter is an overview of ASP and how things work - HTML requests etc. Things get going at Chapter 2, but it is slow progress to a working application. We make the journey of 1000 miles through middleware, Razor, routing, rendering, forms, and of course, MVC. So much to know so small a project...

The first part of the book did little to convince me that ASP.NET was a viable technology as the learning curve presented wasn't so much vertical as revisiting the same problems in detail. If you are looking for a book that introduces ASP.NET in manageable chunks this isn't it. Instead you get the whole picture all of the time and not just the corner that you need to get a particular job done.

Part 2 is titled "Build complete applications" and my first response was surely that's what I've been doing! But no, there is so much more! In this part we look at configuration, Entity Framework, MVC and Razor (again), Authentication and deployment.

Part 3 is called "Extending your application" but it is really more about the later part of the application's lifecycle - monitoring/ logging, security, custom components, using APIs, background tasks and testing. All in great detail.


I was reading this book because I have used ASP.NET in the past and was considering upgrading some existing websites. As I read each new chapter of this book I felt increasing like converting to PHP and a nice trusty old web server. This book does little to sell the idea of using ASP.NET. If you are looking for a book on the subject and have the time to pour over 800 plus pages trying to keep the ideas in your head and see your way through to an application, then this might be the encyclopedia for you. Personally I'd get a copy and put it on a shelf ready to fill in the information I needed to know beyond the basics.  

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C# Programming, 3rd Ed (In Easy Steps)

Author: Mike McGrath
Publisher: Easy Steps
Date: April 2022
Pages: 192
ISBN: 978-1840789737
Print: 1840789735
Kindle: B09WPBZZCV
Audience: C# developers
Rating: 5
Reviewer: Mike James
An easy guide to C# - what could be better.

Understanding Software Dynamics (Addison-Wesley)

Author: Richard L. Sites
Publisher: Addison-Wesley
Pages: 464
ISBN: 978-0137589739
Print: 0137589735
Kindle: B09H5JB5HC
Audience: Every developers
Rating: 5
Reviewer: Kay Ewbank

This book looks at the different reasons why software runs too slowly, and what developers can do about it, starting by looki [ ... ]

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 24 February 2022 )