A friend looking to get into software development and eager to start his career asked what he should read to get started. I don't think I've ever posted this list, so here it is.. The New Testament of .NET, starting with the Gospels.
- If you want to be a great ASP.NET programmer, then buy Fritz Onion's Essential ASP.NET book. Read it cover-to-cover, and work very hard to understand every concept presented. If you understand this book, then ASMX web services will be a complete no-brainer, just some silly syntax to memorize.
- If you want to be a great Windows Forms programmer, then buy Chris Sells' Windows Forms Programming book. Read it cover-to-cover, and memorize this book. If some of it didn't sink in, but go back and re-read it. There is absolutely not a word wasted in this book.
- If you want to be a great overall .NET programmer, read Don Box' Essential .NET Volume 1: The Common Language Runtime. Honestly, you should read Richter's book first to get the most out of this book, and like the others you should not cheat yourself by skipping a single page. It's just a shame that there was never a Volume II.
The rest of the New Testament of .NET includes the books of Troelsen, Liberty, Rammer, and the two books that comprise The Revelations (Lidin and Nathan, respectively).