The api is pretty large, which is why I bought this book. I was hoping to get a better overview than I could get by reading brief tutorials and the reference material. The book definitely delivers, and more.
The book starts with a lengthy tutorial on jQuery selectors. The selectors are based on css selectors, extended with navigational and filtering selectors - for example “#foo:next” will select the node following the node that has id ‘foo’. Using css selectors was a brilliant choice, because it more closely models the way we think about web pages.
The book then has chapters on DOM manipulation, AJAX, table handling, forms, UI effects, etc. Each chapter has complete examples (also downloadable from the publisher’s site), significant enough to be useful as models for one’s own work. The examples work up to a large bookstore example, developed over 3 chapters. The final version of the bookstore shows off most of the features and capabilities of jQuery.
I’ve begun adopting this approach in my own work, and it is already making a big difference. And of course this approach makes it possible for a web designer and a developer to collaborate most effectively.
You will benefit from this book even if you are already somewhat familiar with jQuery. Be sure to get the one reviewed here - there is an older version that covers jQuery 1.2, but there are significant differences betweeen version 1.2 and 1.3.