I reviewed the first edition of this book from the SunSoft series in CVu January 1997. This second edition is slightly longer (about 40 pages) having been extended to cover topics such as RMI (Remote Method Invocation) and JDBC (Java Database connectivity).
The user level of this book is specified as 'Intermediate to advanced programmers' and, in particular, is aimed at C++ programmers (there is an Appendix on OO programming concepts for C programmers). It starts by implementing
HelloWorld(application and applet) in three pages and then moves quickly on to a line counting program, which necessarily uses the
java.iopackage. The philosophy of the book is to take example programs (of greater and greater complexity) and break them down discussing the statements line by line. In general the explanations are clear but concise (assuming a reader with a reasonable OO programming knowledge). The book is in two parts the first on applications and the second on applets (unlike many introductory Java books, which concentrate on applets). The CD contains the source code, Sun's Java Workshop, Symantec's Cafe Lite and JDK 1.1 for Win95/NT, etc.
The book is fairly short by today's standard and discussion of advanced API features is brief or non-existent, e.g. networks are not mentioned at all and the reader would soon have to move onto second level texts. However, a useful introductory book for a reader with some programming experience who wishes to move at a reasonably fast pace and see lots of examples (which I think are very important in learning a new language).