C Programming: A Modern Approach, 2nd Edition

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The first edition of C Programming: A Modern Approach was popular with students and faculty alike because of its clarity and comprehensiveness as well as its trademark Q&A sections. Professor King’s spiral approach made it accessible to a broad range of readers, from beginners to more advanced students. With adoptions at over 225 colleges, the first edition was one of the leading C textbooks of the last ten years.

The second edition maintains all the book’s popular features and brings it up to date with coverage of the C99 standard. The new edition also adds a significant number of exercises and longer programming projects, and includes extensive revisions and updates.

Highlights of the second edition include:

  • Complete coverage of both the C89 standard and the C99 standard, with all C99 changes clearly marked
  • A quick reference to all C89 and C99 library functions
  • Expanded coverage of GCC
  • New coverage of abstract data types
  • Updates to reflect today’s CPUs and operating systems
  • Nearly 500 exercises and programming projects-sixty percent more than in the first edition
  • Source code and solutions to selected exercises and programming projects
  • A password-protected instructor site containing solutions to the remaining exercises and projects, plus PowerPoint presentations for most chapters
C Programming: A Modern Approach

Review by Raymond Woo (Fort Worth, Texas)

I have browsed some C and C++ books in major bookstores to see how the materials are organized and presented. This one was not a book I had a chance to browse, but one which I had to buy for an extension course (Introductory C Programming) at UCLA last summer.

At first I thought King’s book was hard because of a certain depth of penetration into elements of good programming practices with examples one after another. As I became serious and started to reading intently, I found out how effective King was in paving the way toward a comprehensive understanding of C programming through worked out code and annotations. King is very skilled in breaking down and building up C code, unlike certain celebrated C programming language experts who apparently do not care to be clear or are simply ineffective. So my conclusion is: Read this each chapter of this book very closely, carefully and seriously, and try to understand every last point King is raising. Also, do not neglect working out some of his exercises at the end of each chapter for the benefit of practice as well as learning C. In almost every chapter of the book, he gives very good, organized and annotated but not tedious and complex examples. The problems are generally reasonable and hardly ever too complicated because I never found them overwhelming, either from a coding perspective or mathematically. Perhaps it is because King comes across as someone who emphasizes organization, detail, clarity and explanation in his style of presentation. There are no problems dealing with heavy scientific or engineering applications for those who dread them…

All in all: A very good no-nonsense book for the motivated beginner in C programming.

Another reader reviews the book as follow:

KN King tackles on some C standard library specifics header by header. I appreciate how I can quickly figure out what each function of the standard library does after reading the back of the book reference. The chapter on the C Preprocessor has allowed me to make some pretty cool macros and understand how they all unwind. In addition, good practices are also mentioned, although not as frequent as in Zed Shaw’s book. All in all KN King really does elucidate the language with this book.

Chris read the book in 2020 and feels that it is very well organized, easy to read and clearly introduces the programming concepts.

I’m really surprised by how easy it is to read this book. The concepts are organized, referenced, and clearly introduced. The author takes a “spiral” approach to the concepts which allows for a gradual depth of understanding. I have never learned a programming language via text book but this must be one of the best. I am both engaged with and able to use the material. Sample programs are great, exercises are great. I love this book.

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