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I had opportunity to read the SQL Server 2012 Reporting Services Blueprints book by Marlon Ribunal (@MarlonRibunal) and Mickey Stuewe (@SQLMickey), Packt Publishing. Here is my short review.

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I find the book very practical. The authors guide you right to the point, without unnecessary obstructions. Step by step, you create more and more complex reports, and learn SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) 2012 features. If you are more hands-on guy, this is the right book for you. Well, to be honest, there is not much theory in reporting. Reporting is the starting point of business intelligence (BI), with on-line analytical processing as the next step, and data mining as the I in BI.

The book correctly presents all SSRS features. In some chapters and appendices, the authors also went beyond basics. I especially enjoyed advanced topics in chapter 5, “Location, Location, Locations!”, appendix A, “SSRS Best Practices”, and appendix B, “Transactional Replication for Reporting Services”. All together, the book is more than sufficient for creating nice reports without much previous knowledge in a short time, and for avoiding common pitfalls at the same time.

The only thing I am missing is a bit more of theory. Yes, as a data mining person, I like to learn things a bit more in depth. I usually don’t deal with presentation; I prefer numbers. And this is my point – I would like to see more guidelines about proper usage of report elements – when to use which graph type, when to use maps, how to properly present different kinds of data…

Anyway, all together, the book is very useful, and I would recommend it to anybody that wants to learn SSRS in a short time.

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