Review - Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture

Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture by Martin Fowler was not exactly as i imagined. First of all it was written in early 2000s and you can feel that it got a little bit outdated. Back in 2003 I am sure it was a really great source of patterns and best practices but from current perspective it may be a bit less relevant.

The book has some really good parts and I think every engineer would benefit from skimming through it. Way too often I see engineers with huge haps in important areas as concurrency, distributed systems, decoupling etc. I think there is still quite a lot of relevant knowledge in the book.

Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture by Martin Fowler was not exactly as i imagined. First of all it was written in early 2000s and you can feel that it got a little bit outdated. Back in 2003 I am sure it was a really great source of patterns and best practices but from current perspective it may be a bit less relevant.

The book has some really good parts and I think every engineer would benefit from skimming through it. Way too often I see engineers with huge haps in important areas as concurrency, distributed systems, decoupling etc. I think there is still quite a lot of relevant knowledge in the book.

It felt like there were too many Patterns at once

I had two problems with the book:

  1. First half of the book feels like a web wiki page about patterns. The amount of cross references is completely overwhelming. I think it was a serious structural flaw in the book as author keeps talking about patterns that were not introduced yet. I think it would be much better if he would introduce each type of patterns and at the end of each chapter spend time on comparison and reflecting on the bigger picture. Reading Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture you will find dozens of pages that mention 10-15 patterns even that definitions of these patters come much later in the book.
  2. Reading the Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture felt like hard work. I really love reading computer books but this one was not an easy one to digest. I think it is not really that the subject is so difficult it is more about the language. I had an impression that author drifts away in different directions too often. I like colorful language etc but I found this book hard to read.

What I liked about the book

I really liked overview of the design patterns. I think it is really worth to read all the patterns and their descriptions to see the motivations behind them. I think even that it is hard to read it is well worth it.

I also liked some more general advices about software architecture, decoupling and design decisions. If you think of getting to the next level in software design I think it is a really good book for you (just get ready for some serious reading).

In summary I think Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture by Martin Fowler Is a good book but I would recommend it only to hard core engineers and people who want to ramp up on architecture.

Final score 7.5 / 10

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Artur Ejsmont

Hi, my name is Artur Ejsmont,
welcome to my blog. I am a passionate software engineer living in Sydney and working for Yahoo!

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