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Author: Jonathan Stark and Brian Jepson
Level: Some existing experience of web development required
Verdict: Useful but very focussed
The step by step approach is handled sensibly, with explanations of why you're doing things, as well as detailing what it is that you're doing (if you see what I mean). The explanations are clear, and along with the rationale there's lots of code to show what it is that's changing. It does mean lots of repeated code in the book as the tutorial progresses, but the new sections are always cleared marked out. In a book this size it does mean that the code sometimes feels like it's padding out what is already a slim book, but on the other hand sometimes reading code is better than long-winded explanations that leave you none the wiser.
For those wanting to move on and develop native Android apps there's an introduction to the PhoneGap mobile development framework, including details of how to use the Eclipse IDE for development. While this is a useful introduction, keep in mind that it's one chapter out of eight, and that it's not what the core of the book is about. The final chapter looks at submitting your app to the Android market, again it's useful stuff, but it's the technical content that the book is really about.
Overall this is a useful but very focused book. If you're looking to convert your web site or web app into something that looks good and functions well on Android this is a good place to start. But if you're looking for detail on native development and getting to grips with the core of Android then this really isn't going to cut it.