Successful Lisp:
How to Understand and Use Common Lisp

David B. Lamkins

Printed edition now available!


This book:

  • Provides an overview of Common Lisp for the working programmer.
  • Introduces key concepts in an easy-to-read format.
  • Describes format, typical use, and possible drawbacks of all important Lisp constructs.
  • Provides practical advice for the construction of Common Lisp programs.
  • Shows examples of how Common Lisp is best used.
  • Illustrates and compares features of the most popular Common Lisp systems on desktop computers.
  • Includes discussion and examples of advanced constructs for iteration, error handling, object oriented programming, graphical user interfaces, and threading.
  • Supplements Common Lisp reference books and manuals with useful hands-on techniques.
  • Shows how to find what you need among the thousands of documented and undocumented functions and variables in a typical Common Lisp system.

Frequently asked questions:

  1. May I make a copy of the online version of Successful Lisp for my own use?

    Yes, you may make a copy this HTML version so long as your copy is offline.

    You may not publish Successful Lisp on any network accessible to the public, nor may you distribute offline copies in any form.

  2. Is Successful Lisp available in Postscript, PDF, or an archive format such as tar, zip or sit?


  3. Is Successful Lisp available in a printed or printable format?

    Yes! A print edition is available as of December 2004 (ISBN 3-937526-00-5). The book contains numerous corrections and improved typography and layout.

    You can order Successful Lisp from, or check with your local bookstore or other major online booksellers.

  4. I'm having difficulty running my Lisp system or writing a Lisp program. Can you help?

    No. I don't have enough free time to engage in conversations of this nature. I suggest that you talk to your Lisp vendor regarding system or compatibility issues.

    You might also solicit the help of the fine people who frequent the comp.lang.lisp newsgroup. Be aware that these people take a dim view of students who ask for homework solutions unless the student has made (and documented) an attempt to solve the problem. Students will find that they receive a warmer welcome in comp.lang.lisp if they ask a specific question related to understanding a particular aspect of Lisp.

  5. Will you update the online version of Successful Lisp to match the updates made for the printed edition?

    I have no plans to further maintain the online version of Successful Lisp.


Copyright © 1995-2001, David B. Lamkins
All Rights Reserved Worldwide

This book may not be reproduced without the written consent of its author. Online distribution is restricted to the author's site.