The best books to learn about HTML and CSS

Who am I?

I’ve been working with the Web since the 1990s. It’s been fascinating to see the progress and growth of the web design field through the years. As an information technology professional, I’ve held many job roles, including software developer, systems analyst, web designer, web developer, and consultant. I eventually discovered my true calling of teaching information technology and am a Harper College Professor Emeritus. In the early 2000s, I developed the curriculum for the Web Design and Web Development certificate and degree programs at the college. This book is one of the two web development textbooks I wrote to provide my students with lots of hands-on practice while learning new concepts.  

I wrote...

Basics of Web Design: HTML5 & CSS

By Terry Felke-Morris,

Book cover of Basics of Web Design: HTML5 & CSS

What is my book about?

This updated sixth edition of the popular Basics of Web Design: HTML5 & CSS textbook provides a foundation in the skills and concepts that web designers need. It begins with the basics but also introduces creating responsive web pages for mobile devices using CSS Flexbox and Grid layout systems. 

A key feature of this reader-friendly book is the hands-on practice exercises throughout the chapters that introduce HTML and CSS coding techniques. Hands-on practice reinforces new concepts and helps you to gain confidence with your new skills. The chapters also include case study exercises for you to independently apply the coding techniques you have learned. 

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of HTML and CSS: Visual QuickStart Guide

Terry Felke-Morris Why did I love this book?

I have been a fan of Elizabeth Castro’s Visual Quickstart books for many years – she offers quick explanations and good examples. This book is an excellent reference manual for HTML and CSS. It’s great to have at your desk when you need to look up an HTML tag or CSS property quickly. 

By Elizabeth Castro, Bruce Hyslop,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked HTML and CSS as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Need to learn HTML and CSS fast? This best-selling reference's visual format and step-by-step, task-based instructions will have you up and running with HTML in no time. In this updated edition author Bruce Hyslop uses crystal-clear instructions and friendly prose to introduce you to all of today's HTML and CSS essentials. The book has been refreshed to feature current web design best practices. You'll learn how to design, structure, and format your website. You'll learn about the new elements and form input types in HTML5. You'll create and use images, links, styles, and forms; and you'll add video, audio, and…

Book cover of CSS: The Definitive Guide: Visual Presentation for the Web

Terry Felke-Morris Why did I love this book?

Eric Meyer has been a CSS guru since the beginning of time – well, “web” time, anyway! This comprehensive book is for you if you want to get in-depth into the nuts and bolts of CSS. I keep this book on my own desk. It is extremely detailed and informative.

By Eric Meyer, Estelle Weyl,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked CSS as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

If you're a web designer or app developer interested in sophisticated page styling, improved accessibility, and saving time and effort, this book is for you. This revised edition provides a comprehensive guide to CSS implementation, along with a thorough review of the latest CSS specifications.

CSS is a constantly evolving language for describing the presentation of web content on screen, printers, speech synthesizers, screen readers, and chat windows. It is used by all browsers on all screen sizes on all types of IoT devices, including phones, computers, video games, televisions, watches, kiosks, and auto consoles. Authors Eric Meyer and Estelle…

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Book cover of The New CSS Layout

Terry Felke-Morris Why did I love this book?

Rachel Andrew has been a pioneer of the new CSS Flexbox and CSS Grid Layout models. These layout models have revolutionized the way web developers design web pages. It is so much easier to create responsive web pages that look good on many different devices when using new CSS layout techniques. In my opinion, this book is best for a person who has a basic understanding of CSS. 

By Rachel Andrew,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New CSS Layout as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

CSS Grid Layout will transform the way you design and develop for the web—and Rachel Andrew will change the way you grok the spec. Learn to use Grid Layout within a system that includes existing methods to perform the tasks they were designed for—and take advantage of this pivotal moment in the evolution of layout. Contents Where We Came From Where We Are The New Layout Alignment Control Responsive by Default Source Order and Display Order Embrace the Future Where Are We Going? About the Author Rachel Andrew lives in Bristol, England. She is the cofounder of, the web…

Book cover of Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability

Terry Felke-Morris Why did I love this book?

It’s one thing to write HTML and CSS code. But writing correct HTML and CSS syntax does not necessarily result in web pages that are usable with intuitive navigation. Reading the first edition of Steve Krug’s book many years ago really opened my eyes and rounded out my skill set as a web designer. Steve Krug’s book is the quintessential guide to designing a usable website. Just learning HTML and CSS is not enough – you also need to learn how to design usable and intuitive web pages. Every web designer needs to read this book!

By Steve Krug,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Don't Make Me Think as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since Don't Make Me Think was first published in 2000, hundreds of thousands of Web designers and developers have relied on usability guru Steve Krug's guide to help them understand the principles of intuitive navigation and information design. Witty, commonsensical, and eminently practical, it's one of the best-loved and most recommended books on the subject.

Now Steve returns with fresh perspective to reexamine the principles that made Don't Make Me Think a classic-with updated examples and a new chapter on mobile usability. And it's still short, profusely illustrated...and best of all-fun to read.

If you've read it before, you'll rediscover…

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