Introduction to C programming book

My pick for introduction to C programming book is "C Programming Absolute Beginner's Guide" by Greg Perry and Dean Miller. It is probably the best place to start with C if you have no experience with computer programming, because:

  • Covers not only C, but also typical programming concepts like algorithms, compilers
  • The explanations are simple. Exactly what the first timer needs.
  • It has enough thematic challenges(not too hard)

Introduction to C programming book

Title: C Programming Absolute Beginner's Guide, 3rd Edition

Authors: Greg Perry, Dean Miller

Standard: ANSI, C99, C11

Pages: 352

For a contrast to the "C Programming Language" this is an entry-level book. Don't get me wrong, you will learn all the necessary fundamentals of C:

  • working with the preprocessor (#include, #define..)
  • keywords
  • operators
  • data types
  • conditions (if..else,
  • loops (for, while, do..while)
  • arrays
  • functions
  • pointers
  • string manipulations
  • working with files
  • and other functions from the standard library

However you will also have the opportunity to learn basic programming concepts regarding algorithms:

  • How to create algorithms
  • How to describe them with flowcharts
  • Turning a flowchart to code

Last but not least, each chapter has a very useful overview, followed by an entire program that demonstrates in practice the theory that was just presented. You can and should use them to play around with the code. Each chapter ends with topical challenges for you to exercise.


  • Easy to follow (given that C programming is a rather hard ground)
  • Explains basics of algorithms - a must for the first timers!
  • Covers everything in C that a the beginner needs to know
  • Useful and comprehensible examples and exercises to challenge you after each chapter


  • Lacks in-depth analysis and explanation of some topics
  • Could be too "lite" for experienced developers

Who is this book for?

It depends on your experience, motivation and goals.

This book is perfect for high school students. It is a very good starting point for college students and future software developers. Still, if you are highly motivated and want to become an expert, maybe this will not challenge you enough and you might feel like you expected more.

In that case, instead of an introduction to C programming book, consider:

Are you already an advanced(or even an expert) level developer?
(usually coming to C from another language)
 - Yes? Then I strongly recommend that you go for "The C Programming Book" instead ;-)