As tech companies keep on expanding and going global, there is more competition now to land a coveted coding job or even crack a coding interview than ever before. According to Forrester, the global tech market will experience a robust 6% growth in 2022 and 2023. For programmers, passing technical interviews is a big part of being able to take advantage of the newly created opportunities. Coding interviews, in particular, delve deep into the nitty-gritty technical details in varying levels of complexity. Hence a high degree of preparation and proper reference is essential.
In this new decade, the standards of coding interviews are changing fast, and many job seekers don’t know what they should be prepared for. Understanding the way algorithms and data structures work will give you a significant boost in your ability to approach coding problems. These 5 books will teach you all the basics, more than what the interviewer expects. They cover Java, clean code, and object oriented design concepts. Additionally, these books also provide resources for software engineering fundamentals, algorithms and data structures.
1. Cracking the Coding Interview by Gayle Laakmann McDowell
If you are a beginner with little experience in preparing for a coding interview, this book is going to be your best bet. With a plethora of questions and examples from programming interviews, this has become the go-to book for coders across the world because it works. It is written by Gayle Laakmann McDowell who graduated from UPenn with an Honors degree in Computer Science and a Master’s in Engineering from Stanford University.
The book offers an excellent guide to the different types of technical questions asked during software programming interviews, and guides the reader to think about an efficient and elegant solution to these questions. It also offers a nice overview of problems commonly asked on SQL and Java that are relevant for different types of technical roles, such as programmers, analysts, and business professionals.
2. The Algorithm Design Manual by Steven S. Skiena
This book has everything to get you started with the basics of algorithm design and takes you through several complex problems. It offers easy access to combinatorial algorithms technology and lays more emphasis on design over analysis, which gives it an edge over other similar books. The author has included instructions and methods on how one can design and analyze computer algorithms, which are considered to be pivotal in computer science today. It makes the perfect preparation reference for coding interviews or programming competitions.
3. Programming Pearls by Jon Bentley
Coding interviews often require more than knowing logic and algorithms. You must also solve problems with accuracy, robustness, and efficiency—and within very strict time constraints. Luckily, Programming Pearls arms you with a valuable arsenal of problem-solving techniques as well as brick-solid coding basics. This book talks about problem solving, algorithm design, precision and accuracy. It is comparatively older and some of the concepts discussed might seem rudimentary by today’s standards but still is applicable as an excellent resource to prepare you well for all types of coding interviews.
4. Programming Interviews Exposed by John Mongan, Noah Suojanen Kindler, Eric Giguère
The best way to prepare for a coding interview is to evaluate yourself by solving problems. Not everyone has the time or money to practice problem solving with an instructor, yet it’s one of the best ways to prepare for an interview. Programming Interviews Exposed is a great book for coders preparing for interview questions. It offers guidance on the interview processes that are faced by programmers today. As online coding contests are the new norm, programmers need to be well prepared in advance to ace the interview and fight the competition. This book covers a mix of basic to advanced level questions from a range of topics that can help you learn the skills to solve all types of programming problems.
5. Elements of Programming Interviews by Amit Prakash, Tsung-hsien Lee, Adnan Aziz
Elements of Programming Interviews is a book that summarizes the basic and advanced data structures, algorithms, and problem-solving techniques. It comprises various chapters on multiple topics like design principles, coding problems, graph algorithms, etc. This book is a must-read for all software engineers and developers who want to land their dream job and stand out during the coding interview process. It offers an array of tips and strategies for making sure you are fully prepared for every aspect of the interview, as well as a series of coding problems to help you brush up on your skills.
Ultimately, successfully preparing for coding interviews is all about collecting relevant information, examining and identifying means of application in various hypothetical scenarios. It is also important to approach every coding challenge with a mindset that is focused on problem solving.
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