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I read the book "PHP and MySQL Web Development" by Luke Welling and Laura Thomson. I think it is excellent and hits on all the important things you need to know. It has a big chunk on learning the language itself, a chunk on MySQL, and then chapters on building a CMS, ecommerce, a mailing list manager, a working app that accesses, and lots more useful, real-world apps. It has lots of sample code and includes all the apps on the CD (all of them work!).

The book is very well written and to the point of what you need to know. I know you can find stuff online but when you want to really learn something in a systematic way where you cover all the bases, a book is the way to go in my opinion.

– Donna