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Best book to help you learn C++

Which book to help you learn C++ is best?

There are thousands of programming languages that direct and run operating systems to create video games, apps, software, websites and more. Python, Javascript, PHP and C++ are the most popular. If you’re looking to advance in your career or change paths entirely, C++ is an excellent asset for your resume.

If you’re looking for a book to help you learn, C++ Primer (5th Edition) is updated to the latest standards and has helpful information for novices and experts alike. Three experienced programmers co-author this book to ensure a thorough and well-rounded exploration of C++.

What to know before you buy a book to help you learn C++

What is C++?

C++ is an extension of C and is a cross-platform language used to create advanced applications. This programming language writes video games, movie effects, phone applications, databases, web browsers, AI tools and virtual reality applications. It created many programs you may know, such as Adobe, Spotify, YouTube, Amazon and Microsoft Office. This language also analyzes scientific and medical research, making it a key skill for millions of professionals.

C++ courses

When it comes to learning C++, a quality instructional book is not the only tool at your disposal. C++ online courses are led by programming professionals and give you hands-on experience learning languages. These courses have flexible schedules and live assistance from experienced developers that ensure you grasp the many concepts in C++.

C++ certifications

Learning C++ and fully understanding its modules is only one step in becoming a certified professional. Wherever you are in the learning process, consider future official documentation that proves your hard work. C++ certifications are available through many online courses and the C++ Institute. Keep this in mind as you progress through your book to learn C++.

What to look for in a quality book to help you learn C++

Experienced authors

An instructional book to learn C++ is only as good as the person who wrote it. Check the author’s credentials, ensuring that they have experience in programming and C++ specifically. Self-published authors are rampant on Amazon, and you don’t want to pick a book written by someone hardly more qualified than yourself. 

Thorough information

Just as important as the author is the information inside your book. Every comprehensive programming book covers the basics of the language and its reasoning. Beginner and advanced books should delve into the many modules and factors that make up C++. Watch for mentions of the “four pillars of object-oriented development”, a concept that C++ fully supports. Books should also refer to standard libraries and explanations of functions, variables, data structures and similar concepts.


The C++17 version of C++ was released in December 2017 and the C++20 version was released in October 2020. These are the latest versions of the language, and you need a book published later than 2017 to guarantee it’s updated to current standards.

Keep in mind that the language is constantly developing, and there are always technical changes awaiting approval between version releases.

How much you can expect to spend on a book to help you learn C++

C++ programming language books cost $35–$65. Free-to-access books are available through Kindle Unlimited for $10 a month.

Book to help you learn C++ FAQ

Can C++ be your first programming language?

A. C++ is a challenging language, but learning this language first helps you understand how computers work. Learning C++ first also gives you a headstart in learning other languages developed using this program. If C++ is too challenging, try starting with Javascript or Python instead. 

What do you need to code in C++?

A. All you need to start coding in C++ is your operating system’s text editor and a compiler program.

What is C++ best used for?

A. C++ is used to create other programming languages. It works well with software that requires advanced graphics, such as games and image editing apps.

What’s the best book to help you learn C++ to buy?

Top book to help you learn C++

C++ Primer (5th Edition)

What you need to know: This informational guide to C++ has explanations and examples that teach you how to use the newest version of this programming language.

What you’ll love: This book was co-authored by a computer scientist who developed the initial C++ language. It is an expansive book that explains the extensive structure of C++ in an organized manner. It covers how to write the language and clarifies its reasoning.

What you should consider: Some coding examples are formatted strangely in the Kindle version.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top book to help you learn C++ for the money

Modern C++ Programming Cookbook

What you need to know: This C++ guidebook was published in September 2020 and explores the features and development of multiple versions of the language.

What you’ll love: This book was written by a software engineer with 20 years of C++ experience. It covers core features and modules and is written for entry and intermediate-level programmers. Many programmers use it as a reference book to not waste their time Googling concepts.

What you should consider: Not all the chapters are for beginners.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

A Tour Of C++ (C++ In-Depth Series)

What you need to know: This 2018 book release was written by the designer behind C++ and presents C++17 concepts and future plans for C++20.

What you’ll love: This book begins with the basics then delves into more advanced topics, dividing its chapters by different modules of C++. It was written by the designer of this programming language and is considered a “must-read” by hundreds of programmers.

What you should consider: This book requires a basic understanding of C++.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Gwen Swanson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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