Using Drupal by Angela Byron, Addison Berry, and Bruno De Bondt is a comprehensive introduction to Drupal that can help get your first Drupal project off the ground.
Learning Drupal is a personal project of mine of mine this year, so reading this book was definitely part of my education. I compliment the authors on the friendly and warm writing style in the book. The book provides a solid introduction into the world of Drupal including starting with a history of content management on the web, and then delving into how Drupal works.
Some notable parts of this book (for me at least) are: