36 Best Books on Compilers

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We have compiled a list of the Best Reference Books on Compilers. These books are used by students of top universities, institutes, and colleges. Here is the complete list of Compilers books with their authors, publishers, and an unbiased review of them. This will help you choose the right book depending on if you are a beginner or an expert in this topic. If permissible, you can also download the free PDF books on Compilers below. We have also provided the amazon links to purchase these books.

1. Compilers

1."Compilers: Principles, Techniques and Tools" by Alfred V Aho and Ravi Sethi
Book Review: This book is popularly known as the Dragon Book among professors, students and developers all over the world. The book provides information regarding the developments in the fields of software engineering, programming languages and computer architecture. The book also focuses on the broader set of problems that occur in the field of software design and software development. The book covers various topics in automata theory which include regular expressions, NFA, DFA, grammars, ambiguities and techniques of dealing with the ambiguities. in depth knowledge of grammar theory, parsers, handles and prefixes is also given in the book.

2."Programming Language Pragmatics" by Michael L Scott
Book Review: This book includes the most recent developments in the field of programming language design. A new chapter on runtime program management is included in the book thereby providing wide coverage of concurrency. The book provides both the students and professionals with firm understanding of issues related to software development. The book provides an extensive coverage of concurrency and makes the students and professionals understand the important advances driving software. The book also contains more than 800 examples which will help the reader to access content.

3."Modern Compiler Implementation in C/Java" by Andrew W Appel
Book Review: The book provides a description about all the phases of a compiler which include lexical analysis, parsing, abstract syntax and semantic actions, intermediate representations, tree matching instruction selection, dataflow analysis, runtime systems and register allocations. The book also describes the techniques in code generation and register allocation and compilation of functional and object oriented languages. The book also provides a compilation of object oriented and functional languages, garbage collection, loop optimization, instruction scheduling and many others. The book includes discussion of both java and object oriented programming concepts.

4."Engineering a Compiler" by Keith D Cooper and Linda Torczon
Book Review: This book provides a comprehensive coverage of important techniques for constructing a modern compiler. The book presents techniques for constructing a modern compiler thereby making the readers understand the techniques of compiling of imperative and object oriented languages, instruction scheduling and graph coloring register allocation. Main focus is laid on code optimization and code generation techniques and the book also contains summaries, overviews and review questions for all the chapters.The book also takes a look at the problems faced in compiler construction and discussion of algorithmic alternatives. The book in addition also presents the techniques of scanning, parsing and semantic description. It is a suitable book to be used in a compilers course at the undergraduate or graduate level.

5."Compiler Design in C" by Allen I Holob
Book Review: This book is very useful for students, engineers and programmers thereby helping them to deal with the real world compiler design concepts and implementation. The book first provides detailed information on the basic concepts of C programming language, and in the later part of the book it provides a complete C compiler thereby covering the complete sources for the compiler generation tools. The book also uses the techniques of Lex and yacc to develop a complete C compiler. In addition, the book also contains a chapter which includes the coverage of various C++ topics and features.

6."Compilers : Principles, Techniques, & Tools 2nd Edition" by Alfred V Aho and Ravi Sethi
“Compilers: Principles, Techniques, & Tools 2nd Edition” Book Review: This book provides comprehensive details regarding compiler technology with examples and algorithms to aid in better understanding of the core concepts. With an added introduction to compiler design, the book lives up to its name, the Dragon Book, by detailing crucial topics like fine state machines, runtime environments, code generation, garbage collection, type checking, scanning, and parsing. This book is designed for professionals and computer science engineering students studying in their fifth, sixth or seventh semester who are already familiar with the basic concepts.

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7."Elements of Compiler Design" by Meduna
“Elements of Compiler Design” Book Review: This book provides a concise explanation to the process of compiler writing with the help of both theoretical and practical approach. The author details the concepts and techniques employed in compiler design and rudimental models like grammars, automata etc. in a clear-cut manner. Implementation and application of compilation techniques and algorithms are emphasized by numerous detailed examples and case-studies present in this book. This book can be followed by computer science undergraduate students as well as professionals alike.

8."Compiler Design" by K Muneeswaran
“Compiler Design” Book Review: This book aims to provide a thorough understanding of the design and implementation aspects of a compiler. The various phases involved in compiler design, such as syntax analysis, lexical analysis, run-time storage organization, intermediate code organization, code optimization, and final code generation, have been discussed in detail in separate chapters. Compiler writing tools like Lex, Yacc, JavaCC, and ANTLR are also explained at length. At the end of every chapter, numerous objective type questions with answers, review questions, and exercises are provided, graded as per Bloom’s Taxonomy Principles. Appendices on the parsing of C language and five model question papers are also included. This book is suitable for undergraduate and postgraduate students pursuing computer science and information technology and computer applications.

9."Using the GNU Compiler Collection" by Richard M. Stallman and The GCC Developer Community
“Using the GNU Compiler Collection” Book Review: This reference manual provides extensive details on how to use the GNU compilers corresponding to GCC compilers version 4.3.3. Their features and incompatibilities are also detailed along with an in-depth analysis of the process of reporting bugs. This book is a bible for those who want to make effective use of GCC. Additionally, all proceeds raised from the sale of the book will go towards the development of free software and documentation.

10."Compiler Design" by Winster and Aruna Devi
“Compiler Design” Book Review: This book provides comprehensive details regarding various concepts of compiler design. In-depth analysis of each phase in the design of compilers is discussed with suitable examples. Driving factors including parse tree, regular expression, context-free grammar, syntax-directed translations, intermediate code generation, code generation algorithm, and optimization techniques have also been detailed thoroughly. Since the book is designed for computer science & engineering and information technology students, they’ve also included a set of question papers from Anna University which would provide sufficient practice for students from the examination point of view.


2. Compiler Design

1."Compiler Design" by Chattopadhyay
“Compiler Design” Book Review: The book is useful for the students of undergraduate and postgraduate courses. The topics of the book are logically organized from analysis to production and then checking codes. It consists of topics like design and theory of lexical analysis, parsers and code generation techniques etc.

2."Compiler Design" by O G Kakde
“Compiler Design” Book Review: This book is focused mainly for undergraduate course students. Students of compiler construction for computer science and engineering can make use of the book. Moreover, students preparing for GATE can also be benefited with it. The concepts in this book are comprehensive and clear. It provides in-depth knowledge about the topics giving more stress on problem solving. The book contains several number of examples and illustrations along with unsolved problems.

3."Express Learning - Principles of Compiler Design" by ITL ESL
“Express Learning – Principles of Compiler Design” Book Review: This book is designed as a guide to undergraduate computer courses. The book provides concepts in an easy to understand manner. It also consists of various questions and answers for practice.

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4."Compilers: Principles, Techniques, and Tools" by Alfred V Aho and Monica S Lam
“Compilers: Principles, Techniques, and Tools” Book Review: The book can be useful to computer scientists and developers. For undergraduate or postgraduate students learning programming languages also it is helpful. The book consists from fundamentals of compilers to advanced concepts of compilers. Each chapter in this book contains the latest developments in software engineering.

5."Principles of Compiler Design" by D Chithra
“Principles of Compiler Design” Book review: The book is designed for undergraduate and postgraduate students of engineering. It is written at par with the syllabus of Anna university but useful to every student of other universities also. The book provides elaborative concepts of compiler design in an interesting approach.

6."Compiler Design Work Book" by I C E INSTITUTION


3. Advances in Compiler Construction

1."Compilers: Principles, Techniques and Tools" by Alfred V Aho and Ravi Sethi
“Compilers: Principles, Techniques, and Tools” Book Review: This book offers linearly independent solutions to provide a better understanding of the subject and it comes with a complete front end. Aptly named the Dragon Book, it covers essential concepts including compiler structure, lexical analysis, syntax analysis, type checking, run-time environment, code generation, code optimization, directed translation, new data flow analyses, parallel machines, garbage collection, and case studies. It covers the syllabus for information technology and computer science engineering.

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2."Programming Language Pragmatics" by Michael L Scott
“Programming Language Pragmatics” Book Review: This book presents a comprehensive coverage of the relationship between language design and implementation along with the most recent developments in programming language design. Concepts discussed include Java 6 and 7, FORTRAN 2003 and 2008, C++0X, C# 3.0, Ada 2005, and Scheme R6RS. Newer topics on run-time program management cover virtual machines, just-in-time and dynamic compilation, mobile code, managed code, reflection, sandboxing, binary translation and rewriting, debugging, and program analysis tools. With over 800 examples provided, this book is suitable for undergraduate computer science students, programmers, and systems and software engineers.

3."Modern Compiler Implementation in C/Java" by Andrew W Appel
“Modern Compiler Implementation in Java” Book Review: This book discusses all the phases of a compiler – parsing, semantic actions, abstract syntax, lexical analysis, intermediate representations, dataflow analysis, instruction selection via tree matching, graph-coloring register allocation, and runtime systems. It also includes current techniques in code generation and register allocation, and the compilation of functional and object-oriented languages. A new Mini-Java programming project, including both frontend and backend phases, have also been added to this edition.

4."Compiler Design in C" by Allen I Holob
“Compiler Design in C” Book Review: The book is primarily designed for students of computer science and programming. It introduces the fundamental concepts of compiler design. It includes topics related to C-language. This book consists of a blend of basic concepts and critical thinking concepts too. It mainly focuses on the second pass (in a typical four-pass compiler), consisting of a parser, lexical analyzer, and a code generator. The book uses C language to explain its concepts with numerous examples. It is a suitable read for compiler courses on computer science departments.

5."Advanced Compiler Design and Implementation" by Steven S Muchnik
“Advanced Compiler Design and Implementation” Book Review: This book provides a comprehensive examination of advanced issues in the design or implementation of compilers for modern processors. The book covers advanced issues in key areas of compiler design by discussing a wide array of possible code optimizations, determining the relative importance of optimizations, and selecting the most effective methods of implementation. Professionals and graduate students will find this book useful as it guides the readers in designing and implementing efficient structures for highly optimizing compilers for real-world languages.

6."Compiler Construction Using Java" by Anthony J Dos Reis
“Compiler Construction using Java, JavaCC, and Yacc” Book Review: This book presents a comprehensive coverage of the theory of compiler construction, its application and programming technology. It covers every topic essential to learning compilers from the ground up and is accompanied by a powerful and flexible software package for evaluating projects, as well as several tutorials, well-defined projects, and test cases.

7."Compiler Construction" by Sunitha
“Compiler Construction” Book Review: This book presents readers with a comprehensive understanding of the process of compilation while explaining the design and construction of compilers in detail. Both theoretical and practical aspects are covered thoroughly. The text is replete with examples and exercises, making it a suitable read for a freshman course on compilers.

8."System Programming and Compiler Construction (Includes Labs)" by Anand A Godbole and R K Maurya
“System Programming and Compiler Construction (Includes Labs)” Book Review: This book aims to provide a better understanding of the role and functioning of various system programs over application programs. It also explains compilers as well as its phases in great detail. Other important topics such as the theoretical framework for optimizing the code and use of various software tools for developing system programs have also been covered. Its simple text and numerous illustrations make this a perfect read for both students and professionals.

9."Compiler Construction: Principles And Practice" by Kenneth C Louden
“Compiler Construction: Principles and Practice” Book Review: This book provides an introductory explanation of various fundamental topics such as scanning, context-free grammar and parsing, top-down parsing, bottom-up parsing, runtime environments, semantic analysis, and code generation. It also features a comprehensive, hands-on case study project for constructing an actual, working compiler. This book is most suitable for students and novices in this field.

10."Writing Compilers and Interpreters: A Software Engineering Approach" by Ronald Mak
“Writing Compilers and Interpreters: A Software Engineering Approach” Book Review: The main theme of the book is writing compilers and interpreters. The book helps in learning how to write an interpreter, a compiler, an interactive source-level debugger and an integrated development environment(IDE) with a graphical user interface(GUI) by using Java programs. The book provides information on writing compilers and interpreters, executing programs with the interpreter, interacting with the interpreter as it executes the program, displaying the call stack, viewing and modifying values of variables, single-stepping the program’s execution statement-by-statement, adding the IDE, writing a compiler that generates object code for the Java Machine and running these programs in a multiple platform.


4. Advance Compiler Construction Design

1."Compiler Design (International Computer Science Series)" by R Wilhelm and D Maurer
“Compiler Design (International Computer Science Series)” Book Review: It is helpful for the software designer, engineers, researchers and scientists. This book basically deals with the techniques and concepts of compiler construction. Along with the theoretical portion it covers the practical use of the techniques which are discussed. It also consists of examples, short questions and exercises at the end of the chapter.

2."Compilers: Principles, Techniques, & Tools with Gradiance (pkg)" by Alfred V Aho and Monica S Lam
“Compilers: Principles, Techniques, & Tools with Gradiance (pkg)” Book Review: It is designed for software engineers, researchers and scientists. This book basically deals with the principles, techniques and tools of compilers. It helps the readers how to build, maintain and execute a compiler for a major programming language. It also explains the problems faced in software design and software development.

3."Modern Compiler Design" by David Galles
“Modern Compiler Design” Book Review: This book is designed for software designers, engineers, researchers and scientists. It basically deals with the compiler design. The topics are lexical analysis, top-down parsing, bottom-up parsing and trees semantic analysis. It focuses on the integrated java project which helps in compiler design. It consists of examples, short questions and exercises at the end of the chapter.

4."Compilers" by Alfred V Aho and Ravi Sethi
“Compilers” Book Review: This book is designed for software designers, engineers, researchers and scientists. It deals with the principles, use and limitations of the compiler. The topics which are covered in this book are context-free grammars, finite state machines and syntax-directed translation. It also focuses on the techniques, researches and concepts of compilers.

5."Design and Construction of Compilers (Wiley Series in Computing)" by Robin B Hunter
“Design and Construction of Compilers (Wiley Series in Computing)” Book Review: This book is designed for software designers, engineers, researchers and scientists. It discusses the use of high level languages. It also focuses on the design of compilers and practical aspects of compilers. The topics are lexical analysis, syntax analysis, use of symbol tables, storage allocation and code generation. It consists of solved examples and exercises at the end of the chapter.

6."Learn Compiler Design Basics" by Virender Singh
“Learn Compiler Design Basics” Book Review: This book is designed for software designers, engineers, researchers and scientists. It focuses on the basics of compiler design. It covers the programming languages which helps the compiler to execute. It explains the advantages and disadvantages of the programming languages. The principles, limitations and concepts of the compiler are discussed in this book.

7."Compiler Design and Construction" by Arthur B Pyster
“Compiler Design and Construction” Book Review: This book is designed for software designers, engineers, researchers and scientists. It basically deals with the design and construction of compilers. Principles. Concepts and limitations of the compilers are also discussed. It consists of solved examples, exercises and short questions at the end of the chapter.

8."Compilers: Their Design and Construction Using PASCAL (Wiley Series in Computing)" by Robin B Hunter
“Compilers: Their Design and Construction Using PASCAL (Wiley Series in Computing)” Book Review: This book is useful for the students of computer engineering, researchers and software designers. The topics are lexical analysis, syntax analysis, use of symbol tables, storage allocation and code generation. The constructions and design of the compiler are explained in this book. The use of programming languages such as ALGOL 68, pascal and ADA are discussed. It also focuses on the practical aspects of the compilers.

9."Algebraic and Coalgebraic Methods in the Mathematics of Program Construction" by Roland Backhouse and Roy Crole
“Algebraic and Coalgebraic Methods in the Mathematics of Program Construction” Book Review: This book is designed for computer engineering, software designers, researchers and scientists. The topics are lattice theory, fixed point calculus, universal algebra, category theory and allegory theory. Various chapters are covered such as functional programs and algebra of program termination. It also discusses the coalgebraic specification and temporal algebra. It basically deals with the algebraic methods in program construction.

10."Compiler Design Using FLEX and YACC" by Vinu V Das
“Compiler Design Using FLEX and YACC” Book Review: This book is designed for the software designers, researchers and engineering students. It basically deals with design, development, programming, and construction of compilers. It discusses the theory and format of Lex specifications. It also explains the features of FLEX. The topics which are lexical analyzer, syntax analyzer, type checker, code generation and symbol table. It consists of solved examples, exercises and short questions at the end of the chapter.


We have put in a lot of effort for an ultimate collection of books on Compilers and came out with a recommended list and their reviews. If any more book needs to be added to this list, please email us. We are working on free pdf downloads for books on Compilers and will publish the download link here. Fill out this Compilers books pdf download" request form for download notification.

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