I have purchased several books and I swear the best one so far is Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson. It was the only one that clicked that switch in my head as to what an SLR is all about. If you purchase it make sure to get the Revised addition because that one goes into digital photography.
thanks for the info... I"ll have to check it out!
For beginners, my favorite book is "How to Photograph Your Life" by Nick Kelsh. It's not techno at all, but rather a very simply how-to. Each page is a layout of a different scenario, i.e. Here is how most people take pictures at their child's birthday party ... here is a better way to do it.
It can be checked out from your local library and well worth it!