Jeffery Hicks and I have collaborated on what we feel are the definitive books for learning PowerShell. These books have proven hugely popular, and have helped tens of thousands learn the shell the right way. We keep them easy to read, relevant, and real-world.
Start with Learn PowerShell in a Month of Lunches (presently in its 3rd Edition). This is the starting point, where you read a chapter a day and learn how to use the shell the way it wants to be used. This isn’t a programming book – this is just the shell as a command-line shell. We cover all the gotchas that you’ll never figure out on your own, and get you positioned to be effective with the shell in just four weeks of reading.
Move on to PowerShell Scripting in a Month of Lunches (formerly Learn PowerShell Toolmaking in a Month of Lunches; this is a complete rewrite of that book). Even if you have zero programming background, we’ll have you producing automation tools that follow PowerShell’s native patterns and practices. Especially useful for folks who do have programming experience and tend to stray off the path in terms of how PowerShell wants to be scripted. This is an entry level book with a strong focus on patterns, tons of examples, and introductions to the higher-level areas of scripting.
After that, The PowerShell Scripting and Toolmaking Book will be your PowerShell scripting companion for life. We pick up where the Month of Lunches books leave off, and provide more in-depth coverage beyond the entry-level. This is an Agile-published book, which means we are continually expanding our coverage, updating to cover new PowerShell versions, and more – but you only pay one price for that lifetime access to the latest information.
Finally, we always suggest having PowerShell In Depth by your side. Written in conjunction with Richard Siddaway, this book is a reference rather than a tutorial, with more comprehensive coverage of everything the shell can do. Our focus is on the administrator (rather than a professional developer, who tends to approach the shell from a different perspective).