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Perl Books

by faq_monk (Initiate)
on Oct 08, 1999 at 00:14 UTC ( [id://552]=perlfaq nodetype: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

Current Perl documentation can be found at

Here is our local, out-dated (pre-5.6) version:

A number of books on Perl and/or CGI programming are available. A few of these are good, some are ok, but many aren't worth your money. Tom Christiansen maintains a list of these books, some with extensive reviews, at

The incontestably definitive reference book on Perl, written by the creator of Perl, is now in its second edition:

    Programming Perl (the "Camel Book"):
        Authors: Larry Wall, Tom Christiansen, and Randal Schwartz
        ISBN 1-56592-149-6      (English)
        ISBN 4-89052-384-7      (Japanese)
    (French, German, Italian, and Hungarian translations also

The companion volume to the Camel containing thousands of real-world examples, mini-tutorials, and complete programs (first premiering at the 1998 Perl Conference), is:

    The Perl Cookbook (the "Ram Book"):
        Authors: Tom Christiansen and Nathan Torkington, 
                    with Foreword by Larry Wall
        ISBN: 1-56592-243-3

If you're already a hard-core systems programmer, then the Camel Book might suffice for you to learn Perl from. But if you're not, check out:

    Learning Perl (the "Llama Book"):
        Authors: Randal Schwartz and Tom Christiansen 
                    with Foreword by Larry Wall
        ISBN: 1-56592-284-0

Despite the picture at the URL above, the second edition of ``Llama Book'' really has a blue cover, and is updated for the 5.004 release of Perl. Various foreign language editions are available, including Learning Perl on Win32 Systems (the Gecko Book).

If you're not an accidental programmer, but a more serious and possibly even degreed computer scientist who doesn't need as much hand-holding as we try to provide in the Llama or its defurred cousin the Gecko, please check out the delightful book, Perl: The Programmer's Companion, written by Nigel Chapman.

You can order O'Reilly books directly from O'Reilly & Associates, 1-800-998-9938. Local/overseas is 1-707-829-0515. If you can locate an O'Reilly order form, you can also fax to 1-707-829-0104. See on the Web.

What follows is a list of the books that the FAQ authors found personally useful. Your mileage may (but, we hope, probably won't) vary.

Recommended books on (or muchly on) Perl follow; those marked with a star may be ordered from O'Reilly.


    *Programming Perl
        by Larry Wall, Tom Christiansen, and Randal L. Schwartz

    *Perl 5 Desktop Reference
        By Johan Vromans

*Learning Perl [2nd edition] by Randal L. Schwartz and Tom Christiansen with foreword by Larry Wall

    *Learning Perl on Win32 Systems
        by Randal L. Schwartz, Erik Olson, and Tom Christiansen,
            with foreword by Larry Wall

    Perl: The Programmer's Companion
        by Nigel Chapman

    Cross-Platform Perl 
        by Eric F. Johnson

    MacPerl: Power and Ease 
        by Vicki Brown and Chris Nandor, foreword by Matthias Neeracher

    *The Perl Cookbook
        by Tom Christiansen and Nathan Torkington
            with foreword by Larry Wall

    Perl5 Interactive Course [2nd edition]
        by Jon Orwant

    *Advanced Perl Programming 
        by Sriram Srinivasan

    Effective Perl Programming 
        by Joseph Hall
Special Topics

    *Mastering Regular Expressions
        by Jeffrey Friedl

    How to Set up and Maintain a World Wide Web Site [2nd edition]
        by Lincoln Stein

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