C++ Books

C++ Books


C++ Primer * (Stanley Lippman, Josée Lajoie, and Barbara E. Moo) (updated for C++11)

  • Coming at 1k pages, this is a very thorough introduction into C++ that covers just about everything in the language in a very accessible format and in great detail.
  • The fifth edition (released August 16, 2012) covers C++11.

Programming: Principles and Practice Using C++ (Bjarne Stroustrup, 2nd Edition - May 25, 2014) (updated for C++11/C++14)

  • An introduction to programming using C++ by the creator of the language.
  • A good read, that assumes no previous programming experience, but is not only for beginners.

A Tour of C++ (Bjarne Stroustrup) (2nd edition for C++17)

  • This book is an extended version of the material that constitutes Chapters 2-5 of The C++ Programming Language, 4th edition.

Accelerated C++ (Andrew Koenig and Barbara Moo, 1st Edition - August 24, 2000)

  • This basically covers the same ground as the C++ Primer, but does so on a fourth of its space.
  • It has a steeper learning curve, but, for those who can cope with this, it is a very compact introduction to the language.
  • This, the C++ it teaches is purely C++98.

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Effective C++ (Scott Meyers, 3rd Edition - May 22, 2005)

  • This was written with the aim of being the best second book C++ programmers should read, and it succeeded.
  • It presents ~50 easy-to-remember rules of thumb along with their rationale in a very accessible (and enjoyable) style.
  • For C++11 and C++14 the examples and a few issues are outdated and Effective Modern C++ should be preferred.

Effective Modern C++ (Scott Meyers)

  • This is basically the new version of Effective C++, aimed at C++ programmers making the transition from C++03 to C++11 and C++14.

Effective STL (Scott Meyers)

  • This aims to do the same to the part of the standard library coming from the STL what Effective C++ did to the language as a whole.
  • It presents rules of thumb along with their rationale.

More Effective C++ (Scott Meyers)

  • Even more rules of thumb than Effective C++.
  • Not as important as the ones in the first book, but still good to know.

Exceptional C++ (Herb Sutter)

  • Presented as a set of puzzles, this has one of the best and thorough discussions of the proper resource management and exception safety in C++ through Resource Acquisition is Initialization (RAII) in addition to in-depth coverage of a variety of other topics including the pimpl idiom, name lookup, good class design, and the C++ memory model.

More Exceptional C++ (Herb Sutter)

  • Covers additional exception safety topics not covered in Exceptional C++, in addition to discussion of effective object-oriented programming in C++ and correct use of the STL.

Exceptional C++ Style (Herb Sutter)

  • Discusses generic programming, optimization, and resource management.
  • This book also has an excellent exposition of how to write modular code in C++ by using non-member functions and the single responsibility principle.

C++ Coding Standards (Herb Sutter and Andrei Alexandrescu)

  • “Coding standards” here doesn't mean “how many spaces should I indent my code?”
  • This book contains 101 best practices, idioms, and common pitfalls that can help you to write correct, understandable, and efficient C++ code.

C++ Templates: The Complete Guide (David Vandevoorde and Nicolai M. Josuttis)

  • This is the book about templates as they existed before C++11.
  • It covers everything from the very basics to some of the most advanced template metaprogramming and explains every detail of how templates work (both conceptually and at how they are implemented) and discusses many common pitfalls.
  • Has excellent summaries of the One Definition Rule (ODR) and overload resolution in the appendices.
  • A second edition covering C++11, C++14 and C++17 has been already published .

C++ 17 - The Complete Guide (Nicolai M. Josuttis)

  • This book describes all the new features introduced in the C++17 Standard covering everything from the simple ones like 'Inline Variables', 'constexpr if' all the way up to 'Polymorphic Memory Resources' and 'New and Delete with over aligned Data'.

Modern C++ Design (Andrei Alexandrescu)

  • A groundbreaking book on advanced generic programming techniques. Introduces policy-based design, type lists, and fundamental generic programming idioms.
  • It explains how many useful design patterns (including small object allocators, functors, factories, visitors, and multi-methods) can be implemented efficiently, modularly, and cleanly using generic programming.

C++ Concurrency In Action (Anthony Williams)

  • A book covering C++11 concurrency support including the thread library, the atomics library, the C++ memory model, locks and mutexes, as well as issues of designing and debugging multithreaded applications.

Advanced C++ Metaprogramming (Davide Di Gennaro)

  • A pre-C++11 manual of TMP techniques, focused more on practice than theory.
  • There are a ton of snippets in this book, some of which are made obsolete by type traits, but the techniques, are nonetheless useful to know.
  • For more experienced developers, there is a good chance that you may pick up something about a dark corner of C++ (a quirk) that usually only comes about through extensive experience.