The Bottom Line
- Full color pictures and examples
- Jumps right into the complexities of CSS
- Interesting tips throughout the book add to the content
- Covers CSS 2 and 1 properties all together
- The examples sometimes overwhelm the page
- Explanation of the ID selector is slightly off
- Doesn't use semantic HTML
- The first section covers dealing with fonts and text and the basics of CSS and the box model.
- Chapter 5 covers positioning elements with CSS.
- Chapter 6 gives some sample CSS layouts.
- The third section covers lists, tables, forms and hyperlinks - each in a separate chapter.
- Chapter 11 goes over how to test your designs and validate them.
- Chapter 12 explains how to create style sheets for print and other media.
- There is an appendix of CSS properties and values as well as a glossary.
Guide Review - CSS for Web Designers Only by Donna L. Baker
When I first picked up this book, I was really excited. The paper is nice and thick, so when I write in the pages the ink doesn't seep through and I can make notes or add flags easily. The color photos and images make the book visually very enticing.
But then I started reading it and I got a little disappointed. Don't get me wrong, this is a good book on CSS, but even with the color photos and thick paper, it doesn't measure up to a CSS Definitive Guide or The Zen of CSS. This is mostly because of the design of the book itself. Maybe it's the way I think, but I found myself getting distracted by the pictures. I would lose my place in the text and forget what I was trying to read about. I got frustrated several times when she would show me a really nice picture of something done in CSS, but not give me the code to actually do it (or if it was there, I got distracted before I saw it again).
I also really didn't like how she described the ID selector in the first chapter. Nothing she said was exactly incorrect, but she left out one of the most important parts - that the ID selector must be unique on a page. The first sentence describing the ID selector says "With the id selector you can define the same style for different HTML elements using a single rule." This is true, but the way it's worded doesn't mention that those different elements must be on different Web pages. It's like she intended to explain class selectors and used ID by mistake. If this is a typo, it's a pretty serious one.
One thing I really liked were the "Pro Tips" scattered throughout the book. I ended up skimming through the whole book a second time just reading those specifically. You can open the book up almost anywhere and find a tip, and they all have good information.