i've just passed this nice exam and here i wanted to share the experience, with the few that like me will try this exam.
premise: i've never studied a programming language, i have a good knowledge of computer & co., i'm 35 old.
I've started to study java with "Head first java 2nd ed". (about 1 month, full immersion, i'm between jobs in this moment, one of the reason for me to start learning java).
After one month i've started studying SCJA - Cameron McKenzie. This book is very nice, well written and helpful, but it's not enough.
So, i've also studied SCJA - Liguori Finegan. This book is more like a manual, more structured, it helps to understand your weak points. One problem is that sometimes it's a bit boring and other times doesn't explain clearly enough the arguments.
I think that studying on both it's the best solution.
I also did some of the Cattle Drive (you don't have to pay, if you don't submit your excercise for the control), these exercises are fundamental, they help you practice with java having a goal, which is of major importance (from my point of view, of course) when you are learning a new language. Also, the challange is very stimulating.
I've done the first 8 assignment, i think that they help you a lot. If you are already a programmer... they are not so fundamental :-)
Last but not least, i've done the enthuware mock exams. Helpful, really.
The real exam is like an enthuware, i mean the level of toughness of the exam it's more or less the same (even if in enthuware there are question using UML and Drag and drop style which there are not in the real exam).
The exam has about 40-50% of question regarding the point 5-6-7 of the topic exams. (see this link to see what i mean).topics of the exam The rest are questions that provide code and ask you if it's correct etc. etc. and questions more general on java.
About the real questions, sorry guys, but oracle it's pretty strict and i cannot tell you anything more precise than what i've already written.