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The Best SQL Books for 2022

Many of our users keep asking what SQL books they should read to develop their skills. This is a great way to extend the knowledge you gained in online courses. Here are my picks for the SQL-related books you should read in 2022.

It's January – a time of planning and New Year's resolutions. Put reading and learning SQL on your list.

I've read many books on SQL. Some were great, while others were quite mediocre (to say the least). If you come across one of the second species, it’s really just a waste of time. That’s why it’s worth seeking out proven, recommended SQL books.

In this article, I’ve picked the best SQL books that you should read in 2022. These are new books or new releases of bestsellers. My list is subjective and stems from my personal experience and judgment. The article is not sponsored and I do not recommend SQL books that I haven't read. I’ve included links to the product on Amazon to make it easier for you to find the book; it's not some affiliate program. I want to be completely honest and transparent; I don’t want to give the impression that I am trying to promote something even though it does not deserve it.

Perhaps you had the opportunity to see my recommendations last year. If not, read Which SQL Books Should You Read in 2021. These are still great books to add to your list.

Why Read SQL Books?

Is it possible to be a professional SQL developer, analyst, or data engineer without reading any SQL book? Yes, but the more important question is why wouldn’t you take advantage of this additional source of knowledge?

I have always said that SQL is a practical skill. Practice is required to master it, and that means actually writing SQL queries. There is no other way. But in order to have something to practice, you must first learn the theory.

Your primary source of SQL knowledge should be a good online interactive SQL course. You can find the most complete set of such SQL courses in our SQL A to Z track. It contains 7 interactive SQL courses (over 850 exercises) logically arranged to take you from a complete beginner to an advanced SQL user. Create a free account and use the free trial; you risk nothing and can gain so much.

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

And now, what everyone’s been waiting for: the SQL books you should read in 2022.

1.   SQL For Dummies

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

This book is for complete beginners and those who are more advanced but still have trouble using some SQL functions.

I have long been a fan of the "For Dummies" series. It’s iconic in the technical books market. SQL for Dummies by Allen G. Taylor is also an almost mandatory item for anyone working with databases.

In this book, you’ll learn the basics of SQL, starting with the simplest queries and functions. Find out how to create tables and manipulate data. Once you've got it all figured out, you can move on to how to work with XML and JSON files. Everything is pretty well covered. I really liked the chapter on handling errors.

Why should you choose SQL for Dummies? Mostly because it covers the basics well. It’s worth getting some hands-on practice while you’re reading this book. The best practice option (in my opinion) is our SQL Practice track.

2. Sams Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

It's hard to believe that this SQL book has been on the market since 2004. Of course, it’s constantly updated; we currently have its 5th edition. Its author is London-born Ben Fort, a teaching guru and author of 40 technical books. The guy is just great.

According to some sources, Sams Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes is the best-selling SQL book of all time. It’s chosen by beginners as well as professional programmers and engineers. It is often included in university students’ recommended reading material. Are you one of them and want to learn SQL? I recommend this SQL book, as well as our special student o

What makes this SQL book different? First of all, its approach to the topic. You can see that the author wrote it for programmers who work with code on a daily basis.

For example, if you are a Python developer and would like to add SQL to your skillset, choose this book (although I also recommend taking our SQL Basics course).

Most of the basic SQL topics are pretty well covered here. The greatest emphasis is placed on writing SQL queries and achieving full operability quickly. Everyone will find something for themselves. In the latest release, there are additional examples in various databases, including DB2 on Cloud, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, Oracle, and PostgreSQL.

This SQL book is simple and easy to follow, with a clear structure and understandable instructions. Some exercises are quite abstract, but that doesn't mean they can't be done. It's a good SQL book that’s definitely worth reading.

3. Practical SQL: A Beginner's Guide to Storytelling with Data

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

I will admit right away that I am not entirely objective in describing this SQL book. One reason is that I really like its author: Anthony DeBarros is one of the coolest personalities in the SQL world.

Some time ago, I had the opportunity to talk to Anthony about this book.I recommend reading the interview because we talked not only about SQL but also about data in journalism and the future of IT.

But let's get back to the book. The second revised edition of this wonderful practical handbook has just come out.

Anthony really can write interestingly about SQL. No surprise there; he works for the Wall Street Journal and does storytelling on a daily basis. He’s succeeded at something that others often don’t – keeping the reader engaged.

Practical SQL: A Beginner's Guide to Storytelling with Data is perfect for newcomers, but the more experienced will also find something for themselves. A lot of knowledge is shown from the practical side. There is no room for long theoretical descriptions. The book is written similarly to how we create courses on Knowledge, but most of all practice, are key.

The author chose PostgreSQL, which makes me happy because it is my favorite database management system (DBMS). However, you can easily apply most of the things in other database solutions (e.g. in MS SQL Server, Oracle, or SQLite). You’ll learn to write queries and use pgAdmin, a great integrated development environment (IDE).

After reading this SQL book, you will be able to create databases and select the appropriate data types for specific solutions. You will know how to aggregate, sort, and filter data in SQL, avoid mistakes and solve problems. You will be able to create sophisticated PostgreSQL reports and get insights for your business. In the simplest words: you’ll be able to work with data like a professional.

This is one of the most interesting SQL books I have ever read.

4.   PostGIS in Action

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

And now for something very specialized. PostGIS in Action by Leo S. Hsu and Regina O. Obe is one of the few complete and well-written books about this great technology.

What is PostGIS? It is a spatial database extension for PostgreSQL. Want to work with geodata, maps, or apps that use these features? You need to know PostGIS. offers one of the few interactive PostGIS courses in the world.

This is the third edition of PostGIS in Action. In it, you’ll learn the secrets of working with spatial queries and discover useful ways to deal with the challenges of working with geographic data.

I am not a PostGIS expert. I must be honest and admit that at times this book surpassed me. This is really something for pros; if you’re not there yet, get a good grip of PostgreSQL and then revisit this book when you need to handle spatial data.

5. SQL for Data Scientists: A Beginner's Guide for Building Datasets for Analysis

The SQL Books You Should Read in 2022

Almost everything has been said about data science in recent years. There are some who say this is just a temporary hype. However, I say that it is a great branch of the industry and possibly an interesting career. If you want to be a part of it, learn SQL and read SQL for Data Scientists: A Beginner's Guide for Building Datasets for Analysis by Renee M. P. Teate.

The book is intended for people who already understand the principles of relational databases. If you've only worked with data in MS Excel, with a little bit of motivation you should still be able to handle it.

I like how many SQL queries are in this book, ranging from simple data manipulations to complex reports.

SQL can make modeling and forecasting market trends much easier; you just need to know how to do it. With this book, you’ll learn to use the power of SQL to work with data visualizations and create machine learning algorithms.

The book is well written, so there is no problem with understanding even difficult issues. By reading this SQL book, you will learn the basics of analyzing, filtering, and sorting datasets and preparing them for further processing. Use tools like PowerBI or Tableau? You will definitely benefit from reading this book.

This is a great SQL book that, contrary to the title, is not only of use to data scientists.

Keep Calm and Read SQL Books

This is just the tip of the iceberg: there are many more great SQL books. On the blog, we wrote about a few that are really worth paying attention to. Check out:

Don't have time to read? Maybe you prefer to listen to SQL audiobooks? Then check out Marcin’s article on the Top 5 SQL Audiobooks.

Wondering if learning SQL is for you? We have gathered a lot of arguments in the article Is SQL Worth Learning? Also, check out why SQL is future-proof.

Now you know why learning SQL should be one of your New Year's resolutions. Choose one of the SQL courses at and one of the SQL books I recommend and start being awesome!