Preparing for Java and Spring Boot Interview?

Join my Newsletter, its FREE

Saturday, December 23, 2023

5 Must Read Books to become Software Architect or Solution Architect

I receive a lot of queries from senior Java developers, who aspire to become software architect or solution architect, like what can they do to become a software architect? Which books, resources, or certifications can help? And general queries like how much experience you need to become a software architect etc. In the past, I have been suggesting them individually about some books to read to expand their knowledge base and look at the software from architecture and design perspective, and this article is a compilation of many of such suggestions. Since a lot of books can confuse, I have only select 5 best and must-read books from the software architect's perspective.

Since architecture is a very vast subject and highly depends upon the domain you are working, it's not possible to learn everything you need to design software from top to bottom, but these books will give you the necessary tools and techniques required to build robust, secure, and maintainable software.

They will also help you to develop the mindset required to focus on essentials rather than details, which is a crucial difference between how a developer thinks and how an architect thinks.

In general, developers focus on low-level details, like class, and methods while architects focus on high-level details, like how components should communicate, how the persistence layer should behave, which technology to use, what will be the non-functional requirements, etc.

These books are also full of good advice in terms of object-oriented design, good coding practices, and how to avoid costly mistakes in the initial phase of software development.

5 Software Architecture Books for Experienced Programmers

Without any further ado, here is my list of some of the books every experienced Java programmers and all the developers who want to become software architect or solution architect should read. These books will expand your knowledge and fill gaps in your understanding. 

They will also help you to understand the big picture instead of focusing on technical details.

1. System Design Interview - An Inside Guide

This is an excellent book for an experienced developer to learn about System design and Software architecture from an interview point of view. While the book is created to help you prepare for System design interviews and solve system design problems like how to design WhatsApp or YouTube but its also very useful to learn essential concepts about System design and Software architecture. 

By going through this book, you will not only learn about different software architecture like Monolithic, Microservices, and Service Oriented architecture but also learn about essential Software architecture concepts like load balancing, caching, security, high availability, client side and server side rate limiting etc. 

The book is also available in two volume where the second volume was released last year and it cover many modern technology stack like Cloud computing and Microservices and many more tools and design trends which are popular on distributed systems. 

You will also learn about key software components like API Gateway, Router, Load Balancer as well as many design tradeoff like when to choose SQL over NoSQL and vice versa and when to use client-side vs server side rate limiting. Overall a great book for any experienced developer who want to become a Software architect. 

I highly recommend every experienced developer to read book book to learn essential system design concepts.  If you like courses, you can also join the ByteByteGo where you will not just get the digital version of both version but also many more additional content. 

best books to become Software Architect or Solution Architect

2. Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture

This is one of those books, who doesn't need a review. It's one of the classics like Gang of Four book which every programmer should just read.

Martin Fowler is one of my favorite authors and a Guru in the software development world, and this book clearly shows why. The text is very well written and easy to follow.

This book complements the original Java design patterns book but lists many more patterns from the Enterprise architecture point of view.

You must read this book if you are interested in learning the patterns and architectural principals behind the popular frameworks programmers use to make sophisticated, real-world software on the web. If you prefer active learning then you can also combine this book with my favorite Basics of Software Architecture and Design Patterns in Java course on Udemy.

best book to learn enterprise application architecture

3. Software Architecture in Practice 

This book is a good start for those who are curious or want to understand the basic concepts and ideas behind Software Architecture but it somewhat abstract, which many programmers might not enjoy.

What I like about the books is stories and anecdotes about incidents in history. Since I firmly believe that its stories which teach you what to do and what not do and our mind is more open to remember stories then concept, I found this book worth mentioning in this list.

You can use this book as a textbook to learn about software architecture and If you want, you can also combine this book with Coursera's popular Software Architecture online course for more active learning.

Software Architecture in Practice - best book

4.  Clean Architecture

This is one of the first books you should read on Software architect. Uncle Bob, who is also the author of Clean Code and Clean Coder, two of the must-read books for professional programmers, has presented his years of experience on how to build a clean architecture.

Something, which is robust, maintainable, and adaptable to change. In this book, you not only learn about essential concepts of architecting software but also about terminology used at that level.

You will also learn about SOLID design principles and good coding practices required for writing clean code. The book also gives practical advice on evaluating different design and architecture by comparing their pros and cons.

In short, one of the most fundamental books on software architecture, which every senior programmer or someone aspires to become a solution architect should read.

5 Must Read Books to become Software Architect or Solution Architect

5. Building Microservices: Designing Fine-Grained Systems

Another great book to learn about the design and architecture of modern, distributed software, particularly Microservices, which are powering this generation is the greatest apps, like Uber, Facebook, NetFlix, etc.

Also the second edition of this book is now available now and you should buy that as there are a lot of changes between first and second edition and the later one is more  up-to-date and cover latest development on Microservices architecture. 

If you want to move away from monolithic applications to the world of Microservices, then this is the book you should read. And if you want to learn from courses, you can also check out the Master Microservices with Spring Boot and Spring Cloud course by Ranga Karnam on Udemy. It's one of the best and up-to-date courses to learn how to build Microservices in Java using Spring Boot and other tech stacks.

best book to learn microservices architecture

6. Domain-Driven Design: Tackling Complexity in the Heart of Software

This is one of the oldest book features on this list, and many of you would argue that it's not for a software architect. Well, I agree, it's not for a software architect, but definitely, a must-read for programmers who want to become a software architect.

This is ideal for a software developer with 3 to 5 years of experience because it put forth many practical problems and their solutions, which can only be learned by real-world experience.

These problems and their solutions work in many different environments, and someone who is thinking of design and architect should be at least familiar with those.

software architecture books for experienced java programmers

In short, this book provides deep architectural insight and helps you to create robust systems in a changing environment, and most importantly, Eric Evans has done an amazing job to explain all these in a language that the developer can understand.

One of the key attributes of a software architect is knowledge of every aspect of the software, like design, coding, maintenance, deployment, support, etc. and that attribute can only be acquired by expanding your knowledge base and experience. 

These books, along with a couple of advanced training courses on leading-edge technology, like REST and Spring security, can help you to get there.

7. Fundamentals of Software Architecture: An Engineering Approach

"Fundamentals of Software Architecture: An Engineering Approach" by Mark Richards and Neal Ford offers a groundbreaking resource for developers aspiring to become architects and those already in the field looking to enhance their skills. 

With a remarkable 4.6 out of 5 stars from 846 ratings, this book fills a crucial gap in the realm of software architecture guides. The authors, Mark Richards and Neal Ford, both experienced practitioners and educators in software architecture, provide a comprehensive overview covering various aspects of the discipline. 

You will delve into architectural characteristics, patterns, component determination, diagramming, and the presentation of architecture, among other crucial topics. Noteworthy is the emphasis on architecture principles applicable across diverse technology stacks, showcasing a modern perspective that incorporates the innovations of the past decade. 

The book also explores soft skills essential for effective team management, negotiation, and presentations, reflecting the holistic approach needed for success in the role of a software architect.

This work establishes itself as an invaluable resource, addressing architecture as an engineering discipline with a focus on repeatability, metrics, and concrete valuations, thereby adding rigor to the practice of software architecture." If you want to become a software architect then I highly recommend this book. 

Fundamentals of Software Architecture: An Engineering Approach review

8. Software Engineering at Google: Lessons Learned from Programming Over Time 

"Software Engineering at Google: Lessons Learned from Programming Over Time" authored by Titus Winters, Tom Manshreck, and Hyrum Wright stands as a highly acclaimed resource with a remarkable 4.6 out of 5 stars from 677 ratings. 

In a landscape where software engineers are tasked not only with effective programming but also with developing sustainable engineering practices, this book distinguishes itself by emphasizing the critical difference between programming and true software engineering. 

Drawing on their extensive experience at Google, the authors provide an illuminating exploration of how leading practitioners construct and maintain software in an ever-evolving landscape. The book delves into Google's distinctive engineering culture, processes, and tools, shedding light on how these elements contribute to the effectiveness of an engineering organization. 

The narrative revolves around three fundamental principles: understanding how time impacts the sustainability of software, navigating the implications of scale on software practices within an organization, and making informed trade-offs in design and development decisions. 

This work serves as a candid and insightful guide for software engineers seeking to manage and evolve codebases effectively over time, offering invaluable lessons from one of the world's tech giants." If you want to learn how large system works and how to design system in google scale then this book is for you. 

review of Software Engineering at Google: Lessons Learned from Programming Over Time

That's all about some of the best books for a software architect, technical leads, and solution architect. If you are a senior Java developer of 8 to 10 years of experience and want to move the next step in your career towards an end goal of becoming a software architect, these are the books to read to expand your vision and knowledge.

Other Programming Resources You may like:

Thanks for reading this article so far. If you like these Software architecture books, then please share it with your friends and colleagues. If you have any questions or feedback, then please drop a note.

P.S. - If you prefer online courses over books then you can also check out my favorite online training courses to learn software architecture. These courses will not only teach you how to architect your software but also useful design principles and coding best practices required for creating robust software.


Unknown said...

Release It is pretty good as well (

Unknown said...


prince said...

Can you share links to ebooks ?

Anonymous said...

While these are great books, there are other more modern, also great books like Cloud Native Patterns by @cdavisafc, Microservices Patterns by @crichardson
, and Reactive Design Patterns by Hanafee, Allen, and Kuhn

Post a Comment