In summary buy this book if you want to learn Perl. Simply put, this is the best book I have ever found to teach you Perl. I first read a version of this book in 1999. It was a good book then, that has matured and gotten even better over time.
This book covers everything that you need to know to get you started with Perl. Perl isn’t the easiest language to learn, but this book explains everything as simply as possible. Even the chapter on regular expressions.
This particular edition covers Perl 5.10, which has now been replaced by Perl 5.12 (This book was written 2 years ago). That doesn’t really matter as this won’t impact on you. Perl 5.12 is mostly a bug fix release, which adds few new features.
One of Perl’s strengths is CPAN (Perl’s on-line module library). The book does have a chapter dedicated to it, but it only covers a handful of modules. I would have expected the book to cover a few more of the more common ones. This may just be me being a little picky.
The last chapter of this book is really useful. It is called “Beyond the Llama”, and gives you all sorts of information about where to go to learn more. This book is just the beginning…
Please note: I did receive a free copy of this book via the O’Reilly Blogger review programme.