The 11 Best Guitar Books for Beginners

guitar books for beginners

Let’s say you already have your new guitar, whether it’s a Spanish, acoustic, or electric guitar, and you want to learn from a beginner level. Or you’ve had it for a long time, but you want to dust it off and get your art back on the 6 strings. 

An excellent resource will be buying the best book to learn to play the guitar, but which one? 

There are many models available in the market and they all seem to offer you the best for learning new skills.

The main problem when it comes to deciding which book to buy is that there are books dedicated to specific musical styles, others not so complete and some that are simply too basic. 

Today we will talk about how to choose guitar books for beginners wisely so that you find the best one for you.

It will depend on the musical style you want to play and your level. If you are a beginner, it should ideally cover all the basics such as the distribution of notes on the instrument, the most common chords, and different strumming patterns.

Now, the best value for your money book should also cover topics related to music theory. It should teach you how to read sheet music for guitar and harmony. It should also have slightly more advanced themes so that it will be useful to you for a longer time.

Are books a good way to learn guitar?

If one of your doubts to choose a book is that you do not trust that a book will help you learn to play guitar, then let me tell you that you are wrong. Of course, today there are hundreds of tutorials available on the internet with a single click. 

But keep in mind that they always keep some secrets to keep people coming back to watch their videos again and again.

The important thing is that while you take your first steps in a new hobby, which in this case is learning to play an instrument like the guitar from scratch, take advantage of everything you have at your disposal.

Guitar books for beginners are a great way to take your first steps!

Learning to play the guitar means that you must use all the tools available to you. Even if you have a teacher who gives you private lessons. 

There is no better friend to start this path of learning to play the guitar than guitar books for beginners. 

Since you can reread it as many times as necessary, and there are some books that go from the most basic to an intermediate level, they can accompany you for a large amount of time.

Without further ado, now we will give you a list of the best books to learn to play the electric guitar, and a brief review of each one so you can see if it really works for you.

Best guitar books for beginners

“Guitar All-In-One for Dummies” by Jon Chappell

The most recent “All in one” version of this book brings together 8 volumes in 1, which will allow you to go from beginner to intermediate with the need to only use one book. This book deals with both electric and acoustic guitar and is without a doubt one of the best because it covers the most popular musical genres, giving you the basics on how to play each of them. 

This makes it useful for beginners and experienced guitarists alike. It even comes with tips for becoming a songwriter, which will come in handy when you start to feel more comfortable playing the guitar. It is written in a language that makes it easy to understand for any type of person.

“Teach Yourself to Play Guitar: A Quick and Easy Introduction for Beginners” by David Brewster

This guitar book for beginners is shorter than the previous one, which makes it ideal for a quick read, although it doesn’t cover as many topics. It is a small book with key tips to learning to play the electric guitar, directed exclusively for those people who are starting completely from scratch, and who have never played an instrument before, which is perfect for you if that is your case.  

It is the best book to start your path in music, which means that you will probably have to read more later if you want to continue advancing in your journey as a guitarist. It is designed to be read by people who don’t know how to read music, so it is very simple to understand.

“Guitar for Absolute Beginners” by Daniel Emery

“Guitar for Absolute Beginners” is much more complete (and extensive) than the previous one. One thing that makes this book stand out from the rest is that it was written by Dan Emery, who was the founder of the New York School of Guitar. 

It is very complete, covering several topics that will make you finish with a fairly stable level as if you had taken a course of months or intermediate level.

Each one of the chapters pretends to be a lesson on how to play the guitar, so you can read one per week and take it as if it were a teacher you visit weekly.

“Guitar Aerobics”, by Troy Nelson

Written by the same editor as the famous Guitar One magazine, which gives it an authority that is hard to come by in other books. 

Although guitar professionals say that it is not one of the most methodical books, without a doubt it is perfect for people who are taking their first steps and want to improve the mobility of their fingers. 

This is essential for people who want to play the electric guitar (which are also the people that this book is aimed at), as it will give you tips on how to do certain movements without ruining the chords you play on your electric guitar.

“Complete Technique for Modern Guitar”, by Joseph Alexander and Tim Pettingale

“Complete Technique for Modern Guitar” is considered a bible for those people who are starting to play the electric guitar and want to focus on the Jazz genre since it was written by two iconic guitarists of this musical genre. 

Of course, even if you don’t want to play jazz, this book will be useful to you, since it is a book that has more than 200 exercises for you to learn how to play this instrument, which will undoubtedly keep you entertained for a long time. 

It is sold accompanied by downloadable material, which allows you to hear what it should sound like what you have to play in each exercise, making sure you are doing things right. This undoubtedly makes it stand out from other books of the same style.

“Guitar Chord Bible”, by Phil Capone

It may sound pretentious that this book has the word “bible” in the same title, but it is certainly considered a biblical book for people who are starting their path in the world of electric guitar. 

This guitar book for beginners is essential, as it will help you understand everything that has to do with the language of chords, what they are called, how to play them, and what musical genre each one belongs to. 

This will help you gain a greater understanding at all levels of how to function in the world of music and as a guitarist playing electric guitar in particular.

“The Guitar Chord Book: Guitar Chords”, Pauric Mather

This book by Pauric Mather was written in Spanish in 2017. The validity of this book is such that it is recommended for beginners and improvisers due to its high didactic quality that does not deserve a guiding teacher. 

The content of this book includes more than 200 guitar chords explained step by step and illustrated simply. It also contains the 100 most played chords on the guitar, explained simply and practically which motivates beginners to continue with their lessons day by day. 

It is important to note that the book refers to chords, in music theory, as a set of three musical notes or more, which sound simultaneously as an acoustic unit. That is why they are necessary to learn.

“Hal Leonard Guitar Method”, by Will Schmid and Greg Koch

This book is probably the most popular among all guitarists as it is considered a beginner’s handbook. The Hal Leonard Guitar Method is one of the most used by all guitar instructors, and it is the one that is taught to all beginners, so with this book, you can learn it first-hand. 

You can read this book without the need for an instructor to guide you, and it even comes with downloadable content online so you can learn beyond the words in the book.

“The First 100 Chords for Guitar”, by Mr. Joseph Alexander 

It is a book published in 2018, whose author is Joseph Alexander. His valuable experience puts at our disposal a text that must be consulted to master the guitar. 

This time it is about the 100 guitar chords; how to learn and play guitar chords for beginners. In the content, you can assess the characteristics of the chords from the theory and chord construction, through the discovery of the essential chords in the guitar, and then move towards how to work together.

“Learn to Play the Guitar: 10 Easy Lessons”, Gary Turner

This is one of the shortest books on the entire list, so it is perfect to be the first of all the ones you read. It can be said that the lessons it contains are all progressive, where little by little we will gain control of the neck of the guitar, learning songs string by string. 

This guitar book for beginners is also recommended for someone who wants to have the support of the tablatures below the score. It also comes with a CD so you can listen to the pieces.

Music Theory For Dummies, by Michael Pilhofer

There are some books to learn to play the guitar that does not fully explain aspects of musical language. It’s not like it’s something they have to do either, but sometimes this issue is taken for granted and often we find ourselves with a new guitar book in which we don’t understand why there is a 4/4 at the beginning of the pieces, or what which is a pentagram, to give you an example. 

For this reason, this is one of the best guitar books for beginners you can have to clarify all your doubts about musical language, a very well exemplified and explained music theory book that can help you overcome these obstacles.


This was our selection of the best books to learn to play the electric guitar, but at the end of the day, the most important thing is that you choose one that you like, that interests you, and that you can read in its entirety so you don’t lose practice playing this one wonderful instrument.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.