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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A elementary book to become productive with Grails in hours
There was so much pleasure to read "Grails, A Quick-Start Guide" by Dave Klein. After those other Grails books I had already read ("Grails 1.1 Web Application Development", "Grails in Action", "The Definitive Guide to Grails, Second Edition" and "Beginning Groovy and Grails: From Novice to Professional") "Grails, A Quick-Start Guide" turned out to be the best for Grails...
Published on December 1, 2009 by Jacek Laskowski

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0 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very lacking in depth
I bought this book expecting I might go from rails development to grails development pretty easily, but it's missing SO MUCH information it's ridiculous. My main complaint is that it lacks anything about test-driven development. It also doesn't mention much about plug-ins, and nothing about how to manage them within a project and across multiple projects. I can't even...
Published on February 1, 2012 by Jason Fisher


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A elementary book to become productive with Grails in hours, December 1, 2009
By 
Jacek Laskowski (Warszawa, Poland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
There was so much pleasure to read "Grails, A Quick-Start Guide" by Dave Klein. After those other Grails books I had already read ("Grails 1.1 Web Application Development", "Grails in Action", "The Definitive Guide to Grails, Second Edition" and "Beginning Groovy and Grails: From Novice to Professional") "Grails, A Quick-Start Guide" turned out to be the best for Grails newcomers who are keen to start developing Grails applications right from the very first page. Even though it took over 200 pages and just scratched Grails' surface I think any Grails practitioner will find something interesting for oneself, be it for the writing style of Dave Klein or Grails' goodies he was able to present without more ado. I enjoyed it so much that I read it from cover to cover in a blink of an eye. I simply couldn't believe I could read a book so quickly.

The book's title says its all - it is indeed a quick-start guide with 12 chapters and the appendices with a plenty of Grails resources for those who are willing to delve into Grails a bit deeper. The author meant to write a book that's "more than a cursory introduction [...] with all the basics of Grails and a few advanced topics" (page 3) and he made it. The book uses Grails 1.1.1, but it didn't really matter as it'd be considered a too low-level detail for this book. The author didn't touch a feature that required knowing it. It was "not intended to be a reference or the only Grails book on your shelf" (page 3 again), yet it deserved the 1st place on mine while proposing a book for people who wanna go pro in Grails.

I wrote it's a book for Grails novices, but it's not completely true as some advanced Grails gems sneaked in as well. I could learn about the uber-generate-all feature or got reminded of a subtle difference between dynamically generated GORM methods like save() and these which are merely synthesized at runtime, i.e. GORM dynamic finders. It was in this book where I realised that the "dynamic finders are limited to searching based on two properties of a domain class" (page 162).

I'm still overwhelmed with the writing style of Dave and how he managed to write the book without those lengthy introductory beginnings yet everything appeared to be intact in all its entirety. I had to be very patient reading consecutive chapters in one go in the other Grails books, but "Grails, A Quick-Start Guide" was the contrary. The author described Grails' features with just a few sentences and moved quickly on to leveraging them in the real web application being developed throughout the book. Each chapter was a Scrum-like iteration that at the end brought a new feature to the web application. As with the quote by Benjamin Franklin which begun the chapter 2. Our Project - "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn", the book explored Grails with its practical use to build a real project in order to have its readers involved. The author assumed they could eventually learn and appreciate Grails' strengths in hours rather than months and I think he managed to balance the theory and practice very well. The accompanying screenshots and the code snippets were chosen reasonably.

Reading the chapters was smooth and easy. The chapter 8. "Knock, Knock: Who's There? Grails Security" almost killed me for its title. I couldn't stop laughing when I first read it. Not only was the subject funny, but the chapter itself finished so early that I had troubles believing it's over. Whenever I see a chapter about security I fear a lot and it makes my good mood passed away. It's almost always boring and lengthy. This one was different. His writing style and a sense of humour seem very addictive.

The last chapter 12. "Deployment and Beyond" was about deploying web applications to "something a little more heavy-duty, such as Tomcat, or a full-blown JEE server" (page 195). It struck me heavily that Jetty was considered less production ready than Tomcat. Anyway, it didn't influence the chapter at all since it took 4-5 pages without a reference to any container-specific configuration file or task. It merely mentioned Grails' DataSource.groovy configuration file and the war build script, pure and simple.

The writing style of Dave Klein and the comprehensible Grails examples made the reading a very rewarding experience. It's a must-have, elementary book to become productive with Grails for novices and anyone who thinks about writing a book that can attract its readers' attention.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book for developers new to Grails, November 6, 2009
By 
D. A. Burns (Dayton, OH USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
"Grails: A Quick-Start Guide" is exactly what it is titled. From beginning to end, it walks you through the fundamentals of Grails and shows you it's abilities via an application you build along the way with the author. Practically each line of code you enter is explained in detail step-by-step. The book touches on the essential basics all the way up to Grails security, dynamic finders, and available plug-ins. I used it to help me with my first Grails project and it truly made learning this new framework easy. It is an easy read and Dave Klein does an awesome job of explaining the details in a manner acceptable to all. Whether you are an experienced Java developer "tinkering" with Grails or someone new to Java and Grails altogether, you will find this book very helpful. If you want to quickly learn Grails to either create your first Grails application or just to satisfy your curiousity, then I highly recommend this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best "introduction to a new technology" book ever written!, March 7, 2010
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
Dave Klein's thoroughness and writing style made learning Grails nearly effortless. Mr. Klein needs to write similar-quality books on the topics of Spring (Core only), and Hibernate. Both would sell.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Grails equivalent of Mr. Rogers, in a Good Way, March 2, 2010
By 
Amazon Customer (Marlborough, CT USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
At the end of the book, Dave writes that he feels a bit like Mr. Rogers at the end of his show, taking off his sweater, and so on. That's a very apt metaphor, because reading this book feels very much like you're sitting next to Dave, in front of a warm fire, as he gently guides you through all the features of Grails by building a conference scheduling application. It's a pleasant way to learn, actually; both low pressure and low key, but still with lots of content.

If you're looking for a reference book, this isn't it. Try the Definitive Guide to Grails instead. But if you've never used Grails before, and you'd like a friendly introduction (by your good neighbor Mr. Klein) that also gets into advanced topics, this book is a great choice. I highly recommend it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Grails Guy, December 21, 2009
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
I had the rare opportunity to spend some time with Dave working at the SpringOne2GX conference this year in New Orleans. He is a kind, patient, helpful guy that has a great passion for Grails and encouraging its usage. This book reflects his personality well. Several teams here at my company have been using this book as primer to get real applications going on Grails with no prior experience whatsoever. I have literally handed the book to developers when I suggest using Grails on new projects. Usually I would have to follow this recommendation with some hands-on mentoring to help get the project going. However, I have not heard word back from the developers until they had a working system! Even then they had few questions to ask. I think this reflects well on Dave's book.

On a different note, I have suggested the book to several experienced developers with some working knowledge of Grails and they invariably find some nice gems of knowledge in there as well.

Good job Dave!

For a deeper dive, consider the "Definitive Guide to Grails, second edition". For a good intro to the Groovy programming language, take a look at "Programming Groovy". There is also a new edition of "Groovy in Action" coming out early next year I believe. Keep it Groovy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, easy to follow, October 29, 2009
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
Being new to Grails, I was looking for a quick way to learn the basics and get up to speed quickly. Mr. Klein's easy writing style and terrific examples gave me a clear understanding of the power of Grails and allowed me to see for myself what all of the buzz is about. Great book. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very useful, December 6, 2010
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
The best 200 pages of technical literature I have ever read. This is a true 'No Fluff Just Stuff' book. It gave me a tremendous confidence I could produce a full fledged web app in no time using Grails. I was able to go through the book in a matter of three days without major struggles. Just follow along with the example and at the end you would have a fully functional web app. Dave is also active at his support blog at pragprog and answers questions for people who couldn't get something working from the examples in the book. Great job, Dave!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best tech book I've read in a long time, October 13, 2010
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
Being in IT and now a software developer, I've read my share of tech books. I've spent countless hours sifting through 800 page books just to find out the very basics of the material.
I'm really tired of buying these HUGE manuals, only to find 80% of more of the information does not pertain to me.

This book takes a fresh approach to teaching. Instead of showing you every possible scenario and cover every minute detail, let's just take a simple project and work it from the ground up. We can do this all in under 200 pages(including pictures). This is a God send. I was able to cover the entire book, exercises and all, in a week.

I realize this is not a reference book, but sometimes you don't need an exhaustive reference. Sometimes, you just need something to get you up and going quickly.

Thanks for the wonderful book and hopefully more authors will take note of your style. I'm more likely to get a book I can read in a week or 2, than something I'll need to commit 6 months to.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars outstandingly useful starter guide, June 26, 2010
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This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
I am an experienced Java developer who is just being allowed to use Grails at work, so I wanted to extend my knowledge past the puttering around stage, and attended several of Dave Klein's workshop sessions at UberConf. I was so impressed that I bought the book, which I have now read and worked through.

As we all know, most technical books get written because someone wants to learn a subject, and it is almost an accident if they turn out to be readable or useful. But, as Dave explains, he wrote this book not because he wanted to learn Grails, but because he wanted to *teach* Grails, which leads to an entirely different result.

Not only are his examples clear, and not only do they actually work, but it is obvious that he has taught them enough so that after he tells you to do something, he knows what questions will arise in your mind, and he answers them all in a timely and natural fashion. After you work through this book the documentation on the website is instantly more useful and accessible.

I truly cannot recommend this book highly enough. It only aspires to be a primer, but it does this as well as any I have ever read. Truly a joy to read and work through.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good work Dave, April 16, 2010
This review is from: Grails: A Quick-Start Guide (Paperback)
I personally like to thank the author for making the extra effort to see grails through the eyes of a beginner. I read this book in 3 days and it prepared me well for other more advanced ones. I wish all beginners books were like this one.
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Grails: A Quick-Start Guide
Grails: A Quick-Start Guide by Dave Klein (Paperback - November 7, 2009)
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