Top 5 Scala and Functional Programming Books & Online Courses in 2021 [Best of Lot]

Hello guys, if you are a Java developer who is interested in learning Scala or someone starting with Scala afresh and looking for some awesome Scala resources like books, courses, and tutorials then you have come to the right place. In the past, I have shared some free Scala courses to start with and today, I will share some of the best books to learn Scala and Functional Programming, particularly Java developers. While in this age of online courses, fewer and fewer people are using books to learn a new technology or skill but in my opinion, both books and courses have different purposes. I have taken many online courses and read even more books so I can tell that books are almost always more in-depth and provide comprehensive coverage than courses.

Learning from books can take more time and that's where the courses have their utility. They will teach you 20% of things you will use 80% of your time in just half time as compared to books. They also provide a kind of active learning where your three senses are active, I mean, your eyes, ear, and mind, while with books only eyes and minds are active.

In my opinion, you should choose an online course and a book to learn quickly and then further master the topic with some automotive knowledge. As of now, I found a book author more detailed and accurate than a course instructor. They also provide much deeper insight than the course creator.

Course instructors are good at teaching you practical stuff but books are better to learn the theoretical part and that;'s why nowadays, I start with a course and then pick a book to learn any new technology and Scala is no different. 

When I started learning Scala, I joined the Rock the JVM! Scala and Functional Programming for Beginners course on Udemy then followed it up with the Programming in Scala book, the first one in this list. I am still not an expert in Scala as it's harder than Java and I have spent relatively less time with it but now I can read Scala code, create small projects and do bug fixes which are good enough for me. 




5 Best Books to Learn Scala and Functional Programming

If anyone, who has a strong background in Java, C# or C++ is looking to learn Scala, I would recommend the following books, of course, they are not free, but you must there is nothing like FREE lunches in this world :)

Without wasting any more of your time, here is my list of top 5 books to learn Scala and Functional Programming for Java developers.


1. Programming in Scala: A Comprehensive Step-by-Step Guide by Martin Odersky

This is probably the most comprehensive book to learn Scala and why not? This book is written by the creator, promoter, and father of Scala language himself. It starts with introducing functional programming from the practitioner's perspective and shows you advanced language features, patterns incorporated which can help you to become a better, more productive developer.

There is also a course called Functional Programming Principles in Scala in Coursera which you can use along with the book. There are many reasons for it, but the most important reason is this course is by Martin Odersky, who invented Scala.

So learning Scala directly from the Father of Scala wouldn't need any more justification. Also, the course material is awesome, the content is great and coverage is just enough to get your hands rolling in Scala. This book and the accompanying course is probably the best resource to learn Scala online.


best book to learn Scala for beginners




2. Scala for the Impatient by Cay S. Horstmann

This is another great book to learn Scala, particularly if you are in a hurry. The author Cay S. Horstman needs to know the introduction. If you are a Java developer then there is a good chance that you might have read his Core Java books already.

Like his Java books, Scala for the Impatient by Cay S. Horstmann is a concise language reference written by one of the best technical authors in the market. It offers a rapid, code-based, and practical introduction of Scala as a language and platform.

If you need an online training course to join along with this book then I suggest you take a look at the Scala: Getting Started course on Pluralsight. If you don't know this course is free for the next 15 days because Pluralsight has made all of their course free for one month. You can take advantage of that a learn Scala from home.

best book to learn Scala for experienced developers






3. Scala in Depth by Joshua Sureth

This is one of the best books for any software developer who wanted to learn Scala and thinking of writing concurrent programs in Scala, of course for which Scala is designed, remember Scala's name comes from Scalability. 

This book teaches you the best practices required to build high-performance, robust concurrent applications using Scala. If you want to learn Scala in-depth and looking for a comprehensive book then this book is for you. I highly recommend this book to experienced Java developers who want to use Scala for their next project. 

best book to learn Scala for Java developers





4. Scala in Action

Scala in Action by Nilanjan RayChaudhri is my how to do in the Scala guide. It's comprehensive, readable, and explains language concepts by exploring challenges you face in day-to-day work. I love the Action books from Manning, which is unlike other books full of code examples and actional advice. Having read many Action books like Spring in Action, or Hibernate in Action, I jumped on this book when I first found it, and let me tell you that it doesn't disappoint at all. 

Even though I have a fair idea of what is Scala before reading this book, I learned a couple of new things, and also my understanding of essential Scala concepts also improves a lot.  If you need a course to go along with this book then Learn By Example: Scala is a good course in Udemy.






5. Programming Scala: Scalability = Functional Programming + Objects 


This book clearly explains the advantages of Scala as a JVM language. You'll learn how to take advantage of the wealth of Java class libraries to meet the practical needs of enterprise and Internet projects more easily. Packed with code examples, this book provides useful information on Scala's command-line tools, third-party tools, libraries, and available language-aware plugins for editors and IDEs.
best Scala book forJava developers



That's all about some of the best books to learn Scala Programming language.  There is no doubt that Scala is a leading framework in many key spaces like functional programming in JVM, cloud-based Java application, and particularly on Big Data Space with Apache Spark.

There is a lot of demand for good Scala developers as there are not many available in the market. If you are looking for some awesome opportunities in the Java world with hefty pay packages then learning Scala is a good choice and it will help you to take your career to the next level.


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Thanks for reading this article so far. If you like these best Scala books and online courses for Java developers then please share them with your friends and colleagues. If you have any questions or feedback then please drop a note.

P. S. - If you are looking for the best Scala course and don't mind paying some money, then Rock the JVM! Scala and Functional Programming for Beginners is the perfect course to start with. This would be the right choice to learn Scala in 2021.

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