5 Best C Programming Books A C Programmer Must Read

Best C Programming Books
C programming language is one of most powerful languages, checkout these five hand picked top quality books that are still useful in 2021. 
Are you planning to learn C with books? 
“There is no friend as loyal as a book.”
It is almost certain that Ernest Hemingway understood the importance of books in an individual’s life. Books are a rich source of knowledge. You can learn from them. Books present an honest idea to the reader without any discrimination at all. C is a programming language developed by Dennis Ritchie between the year 1969 and 1973 at the AT&T Bells Labs. It is one of the most efficient assembly languages because of the ease of writing machine instructions in it.

Why is C so popular among programmers? There are several reasons behind it. First, it is platform independent and it can be run on Mac, Linux, UNIX, and PC. It is used as the default language for UNIX-systems and other systems following a similar architecture. It is a versatile language and it is suitable for device drivers, desktop applications, embedded systems, and DBMS. It means you can use C for pretty much anything and everything.

C Programming Language (2nd Edition By B. W. Kernighan & D. M. Ritchie)

This book has been written by the Developers of C language. It provides better insights into the C language such as control flow, operators, data structure, and constructors in C. All of the concepts are discussed with proper examples. If you are trying to learn a better programming style, reuse of code, and importance of proper comments, this book is best for you. The exercise series offered in the book poses a great challenge and allow you to improve with every exercise.

This book is not an easy read, however, it is a must-read book. I will recommend you to read this as a second book after starting with a simple read book. There are a lot of chapters in this book that may take a really long time to understand and master the language.

C Programming: A Modern Approach, 2nd Edition By K. N. King

This book offers a unique approach to the C language. C has undergone several changes such as token concatenation and this book enlists these changes effectively. The programs are written in pure C to make them easily portable. This book encourages thinking skills in the reader and allows you to find the most efficient solution to the problem. It is an ideal classroom book for a C enthusiast.

Absolute Beginner’s Guide To C, 2nd Edition By Greg Perry

The book justifies its name and it is specially developed for programmers who have never programmed before. The book starts with basic I/O commands such as printf () and scanf () and advances towards data structures, heap memory, loops, and creating functions. The book is written in an easy to understand manner with a clear instruction scheme. It gives a simple explanation for the basic syntax and notations used in the C language.

C Primer Plus, 5th Edition By Stephen Prata

This is the best self-study guide for C language in the market. You can find detailed explanations of all programming concepts of C. This book includes short examples for every single concept to allow better understanding. For example, the chapter on Pointers is amongst the best-written parts of this book. Pointers are used for referencing a specific memory location and contain its address. This book covers that latest ANSI standard, C99. For basic programmers, this book will be extremely helpful in learning concepts which are used in other languages such as PHP and Java.

Expert C Programming: Deep C Secrets By Peter V. Linden

Are you an expert C programmer looking to sharpen your programming skills? Expert C Programming is an excellent book for programmers trying to gain expertise in high-level C concepts. It highlights some of the best techniques of C language used by the programmers. This book is written in an entertaining manner and exhibits the writer’s expertise in Sun systems. The book defies some traditional ways of programming such as the use of different declarations. It includes several practical tips that can be put to use immediately such as the difference between pointers and array.

Learning C language from books might sound a bit difficult at first. However, these books explain the basic concepts of the C language in the best possible manner. You can build a complete path starting with the basics of the C language and proceed to an advanced level of C. It is important to do the exercises provided in these books. You can learn the concepts effectively with their practical implementation. These books will serve as a platform for learning other advanced languages such as C++ and Java.

Article Updates

  • Updated in July 2021. Validated all books are still valid for learning C programming in 2021.
  • Updated in April 2019: Minor changes and updates to the introduction section. Images are updated to HTTPS.
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