I’ve just received my copy of Professional CSS - Cascading Style Sheets for Web Design so I’d thought I’d share my first thoughts after flicking through the book.

First off, this book looks like a technical book written for people who already have a good understanding of CSS and what that involves, this is not a beginners book.

There’s a foreword by Zeldman. I was quite looking forward to what Jeffrey would say about the book and the subject matter, but I guess he’s already said it all as the foreword is a little uninspiring (sorry Jeffrey). The first chapter deals with planning to design and build a website and touches on subjects such as Information Architecture, Scope and it’s really nice to see a good couple of pages on Personas and User Centred Design.

The second chapter outlines best practices in XHTML and CSS, giving a brief overview to semantic markup, box model, cascade and inheritance, etc. Again, if you’ve read a few CSS books before this one, a lot of this won’t come as a surprise.

Then comes the bulk of books content, chapter after chapter of case studies with interviews from the designers and the techniques used to build the sites. They are:

  1. Blogger Rollovers and Design Improvements - Written by Dunstan Orchard, interviews with designer Douglas Bowman
  2. The PGA Championship - Todd Dominey
  3. The University of Florida - Mark Trammell
  4. ESPN.com - Written by Dunstan Orchard, interviews with Mike Davidson
  5. FastCompany.com: Building a flexible three column layout - Written by Ethan Marcotte, interview with Dan Cederholm
  6. Stuff and Nonsense: Strategies for CSS switching - Written by Ethan Marcotte, interviews with Andy Clark
  7. Bringing it all together - written by Christopher Schmitt

I’m sure they’ll be some really good stuff in all of these chapters.

Anyhow, the upshot is, on first glance, it looks good. It’s good to see a book aimed at the professional whose been using CSS for a while and understands the benefits etc, but needs a book to explain some more of the detail. Like I say, I haven’t read it yet, just thumbed through it, but from what I can see it’s certainly worth the money.

Who knows maybe next Geekend I can get Dunstan to autograph it for me. What do you reckon I could get for that on ebay?