<pre>Author/s : Jeremy Bolie, Michael Cardella, Stany Blanvalet, et al. Publisher : Packt Category :Web Services and SOAP Review by : Ulf Dittmer Rating : 5 horseshoes</pre> The book is billed as a showcase of BPEL best practices, demonstrated by showing 10 real-world projects from a variety of companies. It doesn't become clear what constitutes the "best practice" of each project, though, as there are no comparisons or discussion of alternative solutions. Sometimes the mere fact that something is doable using BPEL apparently makes it an SOA best practice. The cases are descriptions of particular solutions using BPEL, and there is no overarching theme to tie them together. They do serve to highlight particular problems faced when implementing SOA, and how to address them using BPEL, though.
One aspect of the book this reviewer found problematic is that almost all cases use (and sometimes require to use) the Oracle BPEL implementation, Process Manager and Process Designer, all the way to showing plenty of screenshots of its GUIs and dialog boxes. While this will be helpful for Oracle shops, it limits the usefulness of the book for developers using different software, especially as some cases rely on Oracle-specific details like the implementation API and management tools.
The book is relatively short at 170 pages -- which this reviewer counts as a plus in the days of 1000-page technology books -- and is well written and illustrated. Anyone determined to use BPEL will find interesting ways to use it in it. A justification for using BPEL it is not, as it assumes that SOA in general, and BPEL in particular, are industry best practices.