This week's book giveaway is in the Mac OS forum. We're giving away four copies of a choice of "Take Control of Upgrading to Yosemite" or "Take Control of Automating Your Mac" and have Joe Kissell on-line! See this thread for details.
If you are new to web services and is going to write a SOAP web service client, then the easiest and quickest thing to do is to ignore any APIs and instead generate client artifacts from a WSDL.
Take a look at the tutorials at NetBeans: http://netbeans.org/kb/trails/web.html NetBeans is the free IDE that has best web service tooling.