Review: Azure Data Engineering Cookbook (2nd edition)


A while ago, I read/studied this new book, which is written by Nagaraj Venkatesan and Ahmad Osama. At the time, I wanted to write about it, but I never got around to it because of a lack of time. Now, I finally got to it and I hope it will help you in your journey of understanding/becoming an Azure Data Engineer. (Or even help you when getting familiar with the different (analytical) data services that Azure has to offer!)

A lot of the materials out there cover the different technologies, explain what they can do (for you) and then it is typically up to you to "glue" them together. Even though this is a plausible thing to do, the reader/student misses a (to me) "crucial" part, which is "putting it all together". In this cookbook, that "putting together" is being done with recipes, which explain the reader step by step what needs to be done and this actually results in a deployed solution that can help the reader in their journey.

The book is this composed out of 12 chapters that build on each other. The journey starts with Creating and managing a data lake and ends with Monitoring and Maintaining Azure Data Engineering Pipelines. Each chapter covers a few topics, related to the domain of the chapter, and each topic typically consists out of 3 big blocks:

  1. Getting ready
  2. How to do it
  3. How it works

The result is a (cook)book that can be used in a few different ways:

  1. To learn about data engineering in Azure and build hand-on experience with (easy to follow) examples
  2. As a reference where the reader can look up procedures when needed to
    1. (re)learn concepts/approaches
    2. apply approaches
    3. understand these approaches

I really enjoyed reading this book and I learned a few things along the way. So in essence, this book is a great resource and I really recommend it. But, if you are preparing for a certification exam (eg: Data engineering on Azure), then you should not use it as the "only" resource as it is not written with this exam in mind. A great approach would be to see it as the "starting point" of your journey.

About the book: "Azure Data Engineering Cookbook (2nd edition)" is published by Packt Publishing. The book is available in both paperback and ebook format and it is available on Amazon .

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