I'm looking for a book which teaches C++ starting from zero; i.e., it explains what a compiler is, how to choose one, etc. I've looked through a lot of books which seem to take many things for granted.
However, I'd also like the book to cover all aspects of C++. I don't want an introductory book; I'd like a complete book which starts from zero.
The book doesn't matter. If you are teaching yourself just get a few different books that is there for beginner. You want to buy a few different ones because they don't all teach the same stuff. Also what they teach won't all be in the same amount of detail. For example one book might do an amazing job teaching you about pointers but barely cover classes. While another does a really good job teaching you about classes but is ok in pointers.
Before buying it skim through it to see if you like how the person writes. Does he over complicate things for no reason and using all those annoying terminology just because he likes to sound smart or is he actually trying to teach you. Also buy books that teach C++ in different ways. This way it will help open your eyes to the different ways you can write and the different ways people seem to structure their code.
Remember there is no right way. No way is better than another or worst. You decide what you like best. Or if you are working for someone or being taught by them they may pick for you ( teacher really shouldn't but MANY of them do). It like writing essay everyone like it written a certain way. Also there is no such thing as good coding and bad coding at the same time or bad functions. Everything that is apart of C++ was put there for people to take advantage of. How they do it shouldn't define what is good or bad. Which leads me to say the next thing.
Try to avoid books with tons of biasness and people rambling on about their opinion and what they feel is the right way and their "does and don't".
Well 2 books I like because there is no biasness and they don't over complicate things with big words for no reason would be
Beginning C++ Game programming
By: Michael Dawson
You don't have to be interested in learning to make games but what I like about this book is that it opens your mind and shows you actual examples of setting up your coding to actually make something. See it run on the screen and knowing you did something more complicated than the simple examples that they show you. It also get you to see programs which different than you won't in other beginner books. Showing you actual finish games and what it would take to go from beginning to end coding wise like how you would set it up. In the end its literally the same for many programs but beginner books never really touch about how to make anything really complicated.
Wrox Press C++ books by Ivor Horton
I personally like his book because he is VERY detailed when he writes not leaving out anything and talks about all the little things that most books never seem to point out. But a book that detail may not be something you would find interesting.
Those are the two I can think of from the top of my head. Also I was reading your book list and I don't think Effective C++:55 Specific Ways to Improve Your Programs and Designs would be a beginner book :P but I could be wrong.
I have Beginning C++ Game Programming. It does do extensive examples so if you want to make games, it's a great way to start to visual how that code works. On the other hand, because of the lack of in-text code I found it hard to stick with (all the code is online).
C++ Programming For the Absolute Beginner is really solid. The weakest part in my mind was on pointers but many, many writers (and forum posters) seem to forget how hard those are to grasp initially and gloss over the whole "Why do these exist and when will you use them" details.
Currently i'm taking a class using Programming and Problem Solving with C++, 5th Edition by Nell Dale and Chip Weems (comprehensive edition). It's a very solid book, probably my prefered so far.
As far as choosing a compiler, most of them are free so try them all. You'll probably get the best information on that online in places like this anyway. I'm a fan of MS Express products so I haven't felt a need to look beyond those. Then again, i'm a C++ newb.
where did you buy the book Begging C++ Game Programming? The Publishers offers the code to be download so you can have it when your learning the book. As well as the Author has the code on his website so you can download it. Send me a private message and I will tell you where you can go to download it :).
I was going to mention Programming and Problem Solving with C++ 5th Edition but I wasn't sure if people wanted the Textbook style book. Did you by the lab book that goes with it? It gives you tons of practice questions
and stuff to do.