Book Review: Selenium WebDriver Practical Guide

Selenium WebDriver Practical GuideTitle: Selenium WebDriver Practical Guide
Author: Satya Avasarala
ISBN: 978-1782168850

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The book is a good overview of Selenium WebDriver, but it is a very dry and sometimes frustrating read.

There are grammatical mistakes throughout, the code examples are inconsistent (sometimes relevant lines are bolded, sometimes not, line numbers are mentioned however not printed next to the code, tab spacing on a couple of examples is out of alignment etc.).

However those are minor things that can be ignored; more fundamentally the book suffers from a lot of writing that explains how to do everything, but almost never “why”. Why use selenium’s file handling methods vs standard java.io (assuming java is being used of course)? Why need to know how to replace the client libraries with your own; the book in fact simultaneously described this “not an option”/”not the best idea”, but at the same time as “definitely useful” with no real explanation as to why this could be useful in a real world situation (does knowing how to do that help you write selenium tests any better, I can’t think of any reason why it would…).

Not only that large sections of most chapters are simply copy pasted paragraphs with single word or single line changes to cover each of the methods being described. This comes across as lazy writing and about as engaging as reading a javadoc.

Overall 3 stars because it does do a good job of covering most areas of Selenium you could want to know about. I just wish they’d spent more time editing/reviewing it before release, and included more real world examples covering more of the “why’s”.

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