Accelerate & The Phonix Project Books Review

Following article is my a short review of two books The Phoenix Project and Accelerate.
Both books concern DevOps. If you care about DevOps, you should read them!

Let’s Start with Accelerate.

Accelerate - book cover.

This book is much more technical its created by authors of DevOps report and is a more in-depth analysis of their finding and their correlation. In short, this book is a good explanation of why DevOps works.

The book is split into three parts:

The first part (called „What we found”) is an analysis of their findings. In this part, the authors introduce the 24 capabilities of a high performing team and explain how they observed it and why they are essential. And the Why part is the king – behind every „why” stands substantial amount data with which you can’t argue. In my opinion, this is the most important part of Accelerate.

That is thanks to part 2 (called „Research), which explains how the data was collected, why such methodologies were selected. Basically, this part is the fundament on which part one built upon. I have one issue – I think if this part was placed before the analyses, I would be much more trusting. But still, I see why they left it for later.

Part 3 (called „Transformation„)
Is the case study of transformation. It concentrates on the aspect of leadership and culture change. – And as much as this part is excellent in my opinion Phoenix project does it better.

Last part worth mentioning are Appendixes especially Appendix A – which is a shortlist of capabilities and their explanation.

Overall Accelerate is a great book, but it is full of statistics, and it is not a fast read. I would also be wary of audiobook version – due to the number of statistics and references to other chapters it hard to follow.

The Phoenix Project

The Phoenix Project book cover

The Phoenix Project is a different beast. This book is a novelisation of a case study about the introduction of the DevOps to the company.
And it is done high the pace, and author writing style absorbed me so much that I read it in two days.

What was also great was reading it after the Accelerate – if you pay attention to capabilities, you will see how the heroes action leads to the introduction of different capabilities over the book. -Granted they are never called out directly (especially since original release was in 2013 – 5 year before accelerate) but they are there.

The format of the book as a novel seemed as strange decision to me until I remembered we humans think in stories. That why this book is a great anchor for those that are not working in DevOps, it will help them to connect all that abstract info into something more real.

So Both books are great and worth reading, and I will add them both to my book recommendations.
But if you would have time to read only one of those. I suggest the Phoenix Project over Accelerate.

That all for today.

What do you think of such a style of review? I know it is much less in-depth than my typical review. But in case of this book so much was already said that I thought it would worth to show them from the perspective of how they complete each other.

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