Top 20 Best Data Science Books You Should Read

Top 20 Best Data Science Books You Should Read

There are loads of free resources available online (such as Solutions Review’s buyer’s guides and best practices), and those are great, but sometimes it’s best to do things the old fashioned way. There are few resources that can match the in-depth, comprehensive detail of a good book.

Solutions Review has taken the liberty of doing the research for you, having reviewed many of these books. We’ve carefully selected the top data science books based on relevance, popularity, review ratings, publish date, and ability to add business value. Each book listed has a minimum of 15 Amazon user reviews and a rating of 4.0 or better.

Below you will find a library of books from recognized leaders, experts, and technology professionals in the field. From advanced analytics to machine learning, these publications have something to offer even the most tenured data scientist.

Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data

Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data“For those who slept through Stats 101, this book is a lifesaver. The author strips away the arcane and technical details and focuses on the underlying intuition that drives statistical analysis. He clarifies key concepts such as inference, correlation, and regression analysis, reveals how biased or careless parties can manipulate or misrepresent data, and shows us how brilliant and creative researchers are exploiting the valuable data from natural experiments to tackle thorny questions.”

Data Science for Business: What You Need to Know about Data Mining and Data-Analytic Thinking

Data Science for Business: What You Need to Know about Data Mining and Data-Analytic Thinking“Written by renowned data science experts Foster Provost and Tom Fawcett, Data Science for Business introduces the fundamental principles of data science, and walks you through the “data-analytic thinking” necessary for extracting useful knowledge and business value from the data you collect. This guide also helps you understand the many data-mining techniques in use today. Based on an MBA course Provost has taught at New York University over the past ten years, the book provides examples of real-world business problems to illustrate these principles.”

Data Smart: Using Data Science to Transform Information into Insight

Data Smart: Using Data Science to Transform Information into Insight“Data Science gets thrown around in the press like it’s magic. Major retailers are predicting everything from when their customers are pregnant to when they want a new pair of Chuck Taylors. It’s a brave new world where seemingly meaningless data can be transformed into valuable insight to drive smart business decisions. Data science is little more than using straight-forward steps to process raw data into actionable insight. And in Data Smart, author and data scientist John Foreman will show you how that’s done within the familiar environment of a spreadsheet.”

Data Science from Scratch: First Principles with Python

Data Science from Scratch: First Principles with Python“In this book, you’ll learn how many of the most fundamental data science tools and algorithms work by implementing them from scratch. If you have an aptitude for mathematics and some programming skills, author Joel Grus will help you get comfortable with the math and statistics at the core of data science, and with hacking skills you need to get started as a data scientist. Today’s messy glut of data holds answers to questions no one’s even thought to ask. This book provides you with the know-how to dig those answers out.”

R Cookbook: Proven Recipes for Data Analysis, Statistics, and GFraphics (O’reilly Cookbooks)

R Cookbook: Proven Recipes for Data Analysis, Statistics, and GFraphics (O'reilly Cookbooks)“This book helps you perform data analysis with R quickly and efficiently. This collection of concise, task-oriented recipes makes you productive with R immediately, with solutions ranging from basic tasks to input and output, general statistics, graphics, and linear regression. Each recipe addresses a specific problem, with a discussion that explains the solution and offers insight into how it works. If you’re a beginner, R Cookbook will help get you started. If you’re an experienced data programmer, it will jog your memory and expand your horizons.”

R for Data Science: Import, Tidy, Transform, Visualize, and Model Data

R for Data Science: Import, Tidy, Transform, Visualize, and Model Data“Learn how to use R to turn raw data into insight, knowledge, and understanding. This book introduces you to R, RStudio, and the tidyverse, a collection of R packages designed to work together to make data science fast, fluent, and fun. Suitable for readers with no previous programming experience, R for Data Science is designed to get you doing data science as quickly as possible. Authors Hadley Wickham and Garrett Grolemund guide you through the steps of importing, wrangling, exploring, and modeling your data and communicating the results.”

Numsense! Data Science for the Layman: No Math Added

Numsense! Data Science for the Layman: No Math Added“Want to get started on data science? Our promise: no math added. This book has been written in layman’s terms as a gentle introduction to data science and its algorithms. Each algorithm has its own dedicated chapter that explains how it works, and shows an example of a real-world application. To help you grasp key concepts, we stick to intuitive explanations, as well as lots of visuals, all of which are colorblind-friendly. This book provides a practical understanding of data science, so that you can leverage its strengths in making better decisions.”

Big Data For Business: Your Comprehensive Guide to Understand Data Science, Data Analytics and Data Mining to Boost More Growth and Improve Business (Data Analytics Book Series) (Volume 2)

Big Data For Business: Your Comprehensive Guide to Understand Data Science, Data Analytics and Data Mining to Boost More Growth and Improve Business (Data Analytics Book Series) (Volume 2)“Do you know that last two years accounts for 90 percent of the data in the world?  Data whispers stories. Only if you listen carefully, process it, analyze it and act on it, to move towards your next revolution. In this book, you will have gain tremendous insights, understanding and basics of Big Data and how it can helps to identify new growth areas and product opportunities, streamline their costs, increase their operating margins and above all; make better human resource decisions using efficient budgets.”

Practical Data Science with R

Practical Data Science with R“Practical Data Science with R shows you how to apply the R programming language and useful statistical techniques to everyday business situations. Using examples from marketing, business intelligence, and decision support, it shows you how to design experiments (such as A/B tests), build predictive models, and present results to audiences of all levels. This book is accessible to readers without a background in data science. Some familiarity with basic statistics, R, or another scripting language is assumed.”

Introduction to Machine Learning with Python: A Guide for Data Scientists

Introduction to Machine Learning with Python: A Guide for Data Scientists“Machine learning has become an integral part of many commercial applications and research projects, but this field is not exclusive to large companies with extensive research teams. If you use Python, even as a beginner, this book will teach you practical ways to build your own machine learning solutions. With all the data available today, machine learning applications are limited only by your imagination. You’ll learn the steps necessary to create a successful machine-learning application with Python and the scikit-learn library.”

The Data Science Handbook

The Data Science Handbook“The Data Science Handbook is an ideal resource for data analysis methodology and big data software tools. The book is appropriate for people who want to practice data science, but lack the required skill sets. This includes software professionals who need to better understand analytics and statisticians who need to understand software. Modern data science is a unified discipline, and it is presented as such. This book is also an appropriate reference for researchers and entry-level graduate students who need to learn real-world analytics and expand their skill set.”

Doing Data Science: Straight Talk from the Frontline

Doing Data Science: Straight Talk from the Frontline“In many of these chapter-long lectures, data scientists from companies such as Google, Microsoft, and eBay share new algorithms, methods, and models by presenting case studies and the code they use. If you’re familiar with linear algebra, probability, and statistics, and have programming experience, this book is an ideal introduction to data science. Doing Data Science is collaboration between course instructor Rachel Schutt, Senior VP of Data Science at News Corp, and data science consultant Cathy O’Neil, a senior data scientist at Johnson Research Labs, who attended and blogged about the course.”

Data Science for Dummies

Data Science for Dummies“Data Science For Dummies is the perfect starting point for IT professionals and students who want a quick primer on all areas of the expansive data science space. With a focus on business cases, the book explores topics in big data, data science, and data engineering, and how these three areas are combined to produce tremendous value. If you want to pick-up the skills you need to begin a new career or initiate a new project, reading this book will help you understand what technologies, programming languages, and mathematical methods on which to focus.”

Python Data Science Handbook: Essential Tools for Working with Data

Python Data Science Handbook: Essential Tools for Working with Data“Several resources exist for individual pieces of this data science stack, but only with the Python Data Science Handbook do you get them all—IPython, NumPy, Pandas, Matplotlib, Scikit-Learn, and other related tools. Working scientists and data crunchers familiar with reading and writing Python code will find this comprehensive desk reference ideal for tackling day-to-day issues: manipulating, transforming, and cleaning data; visualizing different types of data; and using data to build statistical or machine learning models. Quite simply, this is the must-have reference for scientific computing in Python.”

The Data Science Handbook: Advice and Insights from 25 Amazing Data Scientists

The Data Science Handbook: Advice and Insights from 25 Amazing Data Scientists“The Data Science Handbook contains interviews with 25 of the world’s best data scientists. In The Data Science Handbook, you will find war stories from DJ Patil, US Chief Data Officer and one of the founders of the field. You’ll learn industry veterans such as Kevin Novak and Riley Newman, who head the data science teams at Uber and Airbnb respectively.  This book is perfect for aspiring or current data scientists to learn from the best. It’s a reference book packed full of strategies, suggestions and recipes to launch and grow your own data science career.”

Data Analytics: Master The Techniques For Data Science, Big Data And Data Analytics

Understanding what this data truly means is key to succeeding in the marketplace these days and if you are looking for a way to give yourself an edge then Data Analytics is the book you have been waiting for.I”nside you will find the tools you need in order to take full advantage of all of the data that your business is already generating. There are currently over a quintillion byte of data being created each and every day and if you aren’t considering how you can make the most of your share then you are already losing out to the competition. Understanding what this data truly means is key to succeeding in the marketplace these days and if you are looking for a way to give yourself an edge then Data Analytics is the book you have been waiting for.”

Practical Statistics for Data Scientists: 50 Essential Concepts

Practical Statistics for Data Scientists: 50 Essential Concepts“Statistical methods are a key part of of data science, yet very few data scientists have any formal statistics training. This practical guide explains how to apply various statistical methods to data science, tells you how to avoid their misuse, and gives you advice on what’s important and what’s not. Many data science resources incorporate statistical methods but lack a deeper statistical perspective. If you’re familiar with the R programming language, and have some exposure to statistics, this quick reference bridges the gap in an accessible, readable format.”

Data Analytics Made Accessible: 2017 Edition

This 2017 edition has added four new chapters in response to the thoughts and suggestions expressed by many reviewers. “This book fills the need for a concise and conversational book on the growing field of Data Science. Easy to read and informative, this lucid book covers everything important, with concrete examples, and invites the reader to join this field. The book contains case-lets from real-world stories at the beginning of every chapter. There is also a running case study across the chapters as exercises. This 2017 edition has added four new chapters in response to the thoughts and suggestions expressed by many reviewers. Finally, it includes a tutorial for R platform.”

Learning R: A Step-by-Step Function Guide to Data Analysis

Learning R: A Step-by-Step Function Guide to Data Analysis“Learn how to perform data analysis with the R language and software environment, even if you have little or no programming experience. With the tutorials in this hands-on guide, you’ll learn how to use the essential R tools you need to know to analyze data, including data types and programming concepts. The second half of Learning R shows you real data analysis in action by covering everything from importing data to publishing your results. Each chapter in the book includes a quiz on what you’ve learned, and concludes with exercises, most of which involve writing R code.”

Fundamentals of Machine Learning for Predictive Data Analytics: Algorithms, Worked Examples, and Case Studies (MIT Press)

Fundamentals of Machine Learning for Predictive Data Analytics: Algorithms, Worked Examples, and Case Studies (MIT Press)“After discussing the trajectory from data to insight to decision, the book describes four approaches to machine learning: information-based learning, similarity-based learning, probability-based learning, and error-based learning. Each of these approaches is introduced by a nontechnical explanation of the underlying concept, followed by mathematical models and algorithms illustrated by detailed worked examples. Finally, the book considers techniques for evaluating prediction models and offers two case studies that describe specific data analytics projects through each phase of development.”

Timothy King
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Timothy King

Lead Editor, Data & Analytics at Solutions Review
Timothy leads Solutions Review's business intelligence, data integration, and data management areas of focus. He is recognized as one of the top influencers in big data, and the number-one authority in enterprise middleware. Timothy has also been named a top-75 global business journalist by Richtopia.
Timothy King
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