10 Best SQL Books for you to Learn

Do you know what a database is?

The virtual space in which you post your social media pictures, read a post, or even watch an online video, is called a database.

SQL is a language that is used to create that virtual space. It stands for Structured Query Language. It is a query-based language that’s not very complex to write.

SQL is the standard language for database management systems in the United States, according to the American National Standards Institute. It is an important aspect of the technology sector and is used to power databases from companies like Oracle, Sybase, Microsoft, and Ingres.

Additionally, SQL isn’t only used by large corporations. It’s also popular among small businesses because it’s a low-cost, open-source program that allows anyone to store and update information in a quick and safe manner.

In this article, we have listed down the 10 best SQL books that you can use to learn SQL.

10 Best SQL Books for you to Read

1. SQL Cookbook

SQL Cookbook Query Solutions and Techniques for All SQL Users

Author: Anthony Molinaro
Edition: 2nd
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Anthony Molinaro works at Johnson & Johnson as a data scientist. He is currently employed by Janssen R&D as a manager in the Observational Health Data Analytics group. Nonparametric approaches, time series analysis, and large-scale database characterization and modification are his main research interests.

About the book

You may be familiar with the fundamentals of SQL, but are you utilizing its expressive capabilities? This second edition uses a hands-on approach to Structured Query Language (SQL) to help you construct and manipulate big data sets. This updated cookbook offers a foundation for building solutions and executable examples in a variety of SQL flavors, including Oracle, DB2, SQL Server, MySQL, and PostgreSQL, based on real-world examples.

SQL Cookbook is a great problem-solving handbook for SQL programmers, analysts, database administrators, data scientists, and even casual SQL users. There is no other resource that provides recipes in this way to assist you to solve annoying SQL problems on a daily basis.

What you’ll learn

  • Recipes have been completely updated to reflect the increased use of window functions in SQL implementations
  • New recipes that highlight the frequent use of common table phrases (CTEs) to make solutions more readable and simple to apply
  • New techniques to make SQL more helpful for non-database experts, such as data scientists
  • Solutions for dealing with integers and strings that are more comprehensive
  • Throughout the book, you’ll find up-to-date SQL recipes to help you learn the essentials

You can buy this book from here.

2. Learning SQL

Learning SQL Generate, Manipulate, and Retrieve Data

Author: Alan Beaulieu
Edition: 3rd
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Alan Beaulieu has over 25 years of experience designing, developing, and deploying proprietary database applications. He is the author of O’Reilly’s Learning SQL and Mastering Oracle SQL, as well as a University of California online SQL course.

He now owns and operates his own consulting firm specializing in database design and implementation in the financial and telecommunications industries. Alan graduated from Cornell University School of Engineering with a Bachelor of Science in Operations Research.

About the book

As data floods your company, you ought to put it to use as soon as possible, and SQL is the best tool for the task. In the most recent edition of this introductory guide, author Alan Beaulieu teaches SQL foundations for constructing database applications, performing administrative procedures, and report generation. There are new sections on SQL and large data, analytical tools, and dealing with massive databases.

Each chapter gives a self-contained instruction on a significant SQL subject or procedure, with numerous illustrations and detailed examples. Exercises give you the chance to put what you’ve learned into action. The ability to interact with data demands a working grasp of SQL. With Learning SQL, you’ll quickly discover how to put SQL’s strength and versatility to work for you.

What you’ll learn

  • Quickly learn the fundamentals of SQL and a few advanced capabilities
  • Data may be generated, manipulated, and retrieved using SQL data statements
  • SQL schema statements are used to create database objects including tables, indexes, and constraints
  • Discover how datasets & queries work, as well as the significance of subqueries
  • Use SQL’s built-in procedures to convert and modify data, and predicate logic in data statements

You can buy this book from here.

3. SQL Queries for Mere Mortals: A Hands-on Guide to Data Manipulation in SQL

SQL Queries for Mere Mortals A Hands-On Guide to Data Manipulation in SQL

Author: John L. Viescas
Edition: 4th
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

John L. Viescas has over 50 years of expertise as an independent database consultant. He started his career as a systems analyst, creating huge database applications for IBM mainframes. He worked for six years at Applied Data Research in Dallas, Texas, where he oversaw a staff of more than 30 employees and was in charge of development, database product research, and customer support for IBM mainframe systems.

John earned a bachelor’s degree in business finance from the University of Texas at Dallas while working at Applied Data Research and graduated with honors.

About the book

SQL Queries for Mere Mortals has won acclaim throughout the world as the clearest, most straightforward guide to constructing efficient queries using the most up-to-date SQL standards and database applications. Author John L. Viescas has now revised this practical classic to include even more advanced and useful strategies.

Viescas walks you through the process of building accurate queries for nearly any contemporary SQL-based database, step by step. From simple data selection and filtering to merging numerous databases and changing collections of data, he demystifies all elements of SQL query development.

Viescas builds on the fundamentals to explain how to tackle difficult real-world situations, such as combining numerous complex conditions on a single table, doing advanced logical assessments, and thinking “outside the box” using unlinked tables.

What you’ll learn

  • Understanding relational databases and ensuring that your database structures are solid SQL fundamentals: SELECT commands, constructing expressions, sorting data using ORDER BY, and filtering data with WHERE
  • With the GROUP BY and HAVING clauses, you may summarize and group data
  • Using the INNER JOIN, OUTER JOIN, and UNION operators, as well as dealing with subqueries, you may extract data from many tables
  • UPDATE, INSERT and DELETE commands can be used to change data sets
  • Complex NOT and AND, conditions, if-then-else utilizing CASE, unlinked tables, driver tables, and more are included in advanced queries

You can buy this book from here.

4. SQL Practice Problems: 57 Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced Challenges for You to Solve Using a “Learn-by-doing” Approach

SQL Practice Problems 57 beginning, intermediate, and advanced challenges for you to solve using a “learn-by-doing” approach

Author: Sylvia Vaslik
Edition: 1st
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

“Working as a database programmer/architect and data scientist for more than 20 years with companies including Expedia, Microsoft, T-Mobile, and the Gates Foundation, I’ve had extensive experience with data.

Every week of the course, my students went through practice problems and mastered the foundations of SQL, including the majority of the keywords.

We didn’t spend nearly enough time on the sort of SQL that’s used 95% of the time, intermediate and advanced Select statements, because we were focused on gaining a thorough understanding of all capabilities of SQL.

Many of my students wrote to me after the course ended, asking where they might find additional real-life difficulties. That was the catalyst for me to begin working on SQL Practice Problems.”

About the book

Basic SQL syntax material is readily available on the internet. What’s harder to come by are complex, well-designed real-world problems—the kind that arises when working with data. Learning how to address these issues will provide you with the knowledge and confidence to advance in your work.

You may get that degree of experience by tackling sets of focused issues using SQL Practice Problems. These aren’t merely issues to demonstrate syntax. These are the most typical issues you’ll run into while working with data.

You’ll receive hands-on experience with real-world data. It’ll show you how to “think” with SQL, how to evaluate data issues, figure out the basics, and create a solution you can be proud of.

You can buy this book from here.

5. Head First SQL: Your Brain on SQL — A Learner’s Guide

Head First SQL Your Brain on SQL -- A Learner's Guide

Author: Lynn Beighley
Edition: 1st
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Lynn Beighley is the author of Head First SQL, as well as a fiction writer trapped in the flesh of a technological book author.

About the book

Is your data making you stifle your creativity? Is everything knotted up on your tables? We’ve got the resources to show you how to subdue your datasets. Head First SQL is a multi-sensory SQL study approach that uses the newest research in neurology, cognitive neuroscience, and training theory to create a dynamically rich framework suited for the way your brain functions, rather than a text-heavy approach that puts you to slumber.

You could have developed some basic SQL queries to connect with databases. But now you want to delve deeper into those databases and work with your information.

Head First SQL will teach you how to use SQL to its full potential. From fundamental INSERT statements and SELECT queries to serious database manipulation using indexes, joins, and transactions, we’ll take you on a tour through the language. “Data is Power,” as we all know, but we’ll teach you how to “Control Your Data.”

By the time you’ve finished reading, you should be able to query, normalize, and connect your data like an expert!

You can buy this book from here.

6. The art of SQL

The Art of SQL

Author: Stephane Faroul
Edition: 1st
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Relational databases and the SQL language were initially discovered by Stephane Faroult in 1983. After a brief stint with IBM and a stint teaching at the University of Ottawa, he joined Oracle France in its early days and quickly acquired an interest in performance and tuning issues.

He tried to reform and do some operational research after quitting Oracle in 1988, but after a year, he fell to relational databases once more. Since then, he’s been doing database consulting full-time, and in 1998, he established RoughSea Ltd.

About the book

Despite all the talk about cutting-edge IT approaches, data processing remains at the heart of our systems, especially today when businesses all over the world are dealing with massive amounts of data. Database performance has become a key issue, and most IT companies believe that developers should give simple SQL code to handle urgent issues and leave any “poor SQL” to DBAs to optimize afterward.

Stephane Faroult, author and SQL specialist, argues in The Art of SQL that this “safe technique” only leads to tragedy. His enlightening book, titled Sun Tzu’s Art of War, claims that building quick inefficient code is akin to sweeping the dirt under the rug.

SQL code may operate for 5 to 10 years, surviving numerous major database management system updates and hardware generations. From the outset, the code must be efficient and reliable, which necessitates a thorough grasp of SQL and relational theory.

The Art of SQL teaches experienced SQL users how to concentrate on strategy rather than technicalities. By seeing database design as a military war, Faroult takes a leaf from Sun Tzu’s famous book. You’ll need a combination of knowledge, abilities, and talent. Although talent cannot be ‘taught’, every strategist from Sun Tzu to modern-day generals felt that it might be developed by exposure to others’ experiences.

What you’ll learn

  • Designing databases for performance
  • Accessing database efficiency
  • Thinking SQL statements
  • Dealing with hierarchical data
  • Tackling concurrency
  • Coping with large volumes of data
  • Monitoring performance

You can buy this book from here.

7. SQL AntiPatterns

SQL Antipatterns Avoiding the Pitfalls of Database Programming (Pragmatic Programmers)

Author: Bill Karwin
Edition: 1st
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Bill Karwin has worked as a software developer for over two decades, creating and supporting programs, libraries, and servers such as the Zend Framework for PHP 5, InterBase relational database, and Enhydra Java application server.

He has dedicated his career to assisting other programmers in achieving success and productivity. He has also handled hundreds of inquiries, providing him a unique view of the most prevalent SQL errors that lead to issues.

About the book

This book will assist you and your group in locating them. Even better, it will teach you how to correct them as well as how to avoid such issues in the future. SQL Antipatterns gives you a rare glimpse into a SQL expert’s playbook. You might finally be able to get rid of these common database problems.

Irrespective of the system or programming languages you use, SQL Antipatterns will teach you how to design and develop databases, develop better SQL statements, and integrate SQL coding with your app like a pro.

You’ll also learn about the best and most up-to-date full-text search tools, how to create SQL injection-resistant code, and other tactics for success.

Many developers aren’t SQL specialists, therefore most of the SQL they use is wasteful, difficult to maintain, and occasionally incorrect. This book walks you through all of the most common blunders and then tells you how to correct them. Furthermore, it explains what’s going on behind the scenes of these solutions, so you’ll learn a lot about relational databases in the process.

What you’ll learn

  • Logical database design antipatterns
  • Physical database design antipatterns
  • Query antipatterns
  • Application development antipatterns

You can buy this book from here.

8. Practical SQL: A Beginner’s Guide to Storytelling with Data

Practical SQL, 2nd Edition A Beginner's Guide to Storytelling with Data

Author: Anthony DeBarros
Edition: 2nd
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

Anthony DeBarros is a veteran journalist who has spent much of his career combining his passions for data analysis, computing, software development, and storytelling. He works for The Wall Street Journal as a data news editor, covering themes like the economy, trade, the United States Census, and politics.

He has worked for USA TODAY, the Poughkeepsie Journal, and the DocumentCloud initiative for Investigative Reporters and Editors, among others. His work has won several awards, including the Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards’ coveted Silver Baton.

About the book

SQL is the standard computer language for creating, organizing, and examining data in relational databases. Practical SQL is an intuitive and fast-paced tutorial to SQL. A writer and data analyst, Anthony DeBarros, focuses on utilizing SQL to unearth the story within your data.

The examples and code employ the PostgreSQL open-source database and its companion pgAdmin interface, but the ideas you learn will apply to other database management systems, such as MySQL, Oracle, SQLite, and others.

You’ll learn the principles of databases and the SQL language before applying what you’ve learned to real-world datasets including US Census demographics, New York City taxi trips, and US Geological Survey earthquakes.

Each chapter contains exercises and examples that educate even non-programmers the tools they need to create strong databases and retrieve information quickly and effectively.

What you’ll learn

  • Use your own data to create databases and associated tables.
  • To discover patterns, combine, sort, and filter data.
  • Basic algebra and complex statistical processes can both benefit from the use of functions.
  • Recognize and correct data mistakes.
  • Use a geographic information system to analyze spatial data (PostGIS)
  • Automate tasks and create advanced queries.

You can buy this book from here.

9. T-SQL Fundamentals

T-SQL Fundamentals

Author: Tzik Ben-Gan
Edition: 3rd
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the author

TZIK BEN-GAN is a mentor at SolidQ and a co-founder. Itzik has been a Microsoft Data Platform MVP since 1999, and he has conducted several training events on T-SQL querying, query optimization, and programming all around the world. Itzik is the author of a number of T-SQL books.

He has contributed to SQL Server Pro, as well as MSDN and The SolidQ Journal, with several articles and white papers. Tech-Ed, SQL PASS, SQL Server Connections, presentations to different SQL Server user organizations, and SolidQ events are among Itzik’s speaking engagements.

About the book

Learn the principles of T-SQL and how to develop solid code for Microsoft SQL Server and Azure SQL Database. Itzik Ben-Gan covers fundamental T-SQL principles and uses hands-on exercises to help you apply what you’ve learned. T-origins SQLs and logic are introduced in the first chapter.

Then you’ll learn about single-table queries, table expressions, connections, subqueries, and set operators, among other things. The book then moves on to more advanced data-query concepts including window functions, pivoting, and grouping sets. The book also includes an overview of programmable objects and shows how to edit data, work with temporal tables, and handle transactions.

What you’ll learn

  • Examine the mathematical foundations of SQL
  • Make tables and make sure they’re accurate
  • Using the SELECT statement, you may run powerful single-table queries
  • Joins, subqueries, table expressions, and set operators are all useful for querying many tables
  • Use sophisticated query methods like window functions, pivoting, and grouping sets to get the most out of your data
  • Data can be added, updated, deleted, or combined
  • In a concurrent context, make use of transactions

you can buy this book from here.

10. SQL All-in-One for Dummies

SQL All-in-One For Dummies

Author: Allen G Taylor
Edition: 9th
Available in: Kindle, Paperback

About the book

SQL All-In-One For Dummies, third edition, is your one-stop-shop for everything you want to learn about SQL & SQL-based database systems. Dbas, software developers, and those who supervise them will all benefit from a clear and comprehensive explanation of the SQL language and its numerous useful uses.

With the increasing quantity of data available, more and more organizations, large and small, are migrating away from spreadsheets and toward SQL databases such as Access, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle databases, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. This resource covers database design, development, and maintenance.

What you’ll learn

  • Server platform with many programming languages, data formats, on-premises or cloud deployment options, and operating systems
  • Find fantastic examples of how temporal data may be used
  • Without any prior experience in database programming or SQL, you may get right in

You can buy this book from here.


That’s all for this article. This is not an exhaustive list and there are several other good SQL books available in the market. However, we have tried to keep our list short and concise to help you navigate easily. SQL is an in-demand programming language that will open up several career prospects for you. So, which of these are you planning on reading? Let us know via comments.

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