Some folks like to cook from recipes. You get a predictable result and you know what to expect. My wife will attest that that’s not exactly the kind of guy I am. I’ve created meals that are good and a fair number of them that weren’t fit for the dog to eat – literally the dog wouldn’t eat them. Still, I recognize the value of recipes. That’s why I think SharePoint 2007 Development Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach is a good read if you’re trying to wrap your hands around SharePoint.
One of the problems with typical computer books is that they’ll tell how WHY something works but not HOW to make it work or WHEN to use it. (My own personal rebellion to this is The SharePoint Shepherd’s Guide for End Users which is all about HOW to do things.) That’s why I like the style which shows you how to do practical things. You can read the details of some interface on MSDN, you don’t need a book for that. What you need a book for is HOW you should use it.