Review: "Arquillian in Action" by Alex Soto and Jason Porter

Markus Eisele
I got an email from Manning recently and have to admit, that I didn't even know about the book they were asking me to review. And this is a shame in various dimensions. The book is about Arquillian, which is my favorite integration testing framework and it is written by two fellow friends Alex and Jason. Time to take a more detailed look and point my fellow readers to this newest member in the Arquillian Book Club,

Arquillian in Action teaches you how to to build in-container tests using Arquillian. This practical hands-on guide begins with showing you how to find and squash your first bug. You’ll move on to building persistence tests, and then discover how to write tests for front-end and RESTful services. Using carefully-designed examples, the book shows you how to write integration tests for Java EE, Spring, and Docker. Along the way, you’ll also learn how to build functional, infrastructure, performance, and security tests.

Book: Arquillian In Action
Language: English
Paperback: 325 pages
Release Date: MEAP 6/2015, Publication in Spring 2016
ISBN-13: 9781617292897

About The Authors
Alex Soto Bueno (@alexsotob) is a software engineer and is passionate about Java development and the open source software model. He leads the NoSQLUnit project and is a team member and evangelist of Arquillian. He has spread the word of testing at several conferences including Devoxx or GeeCon. Just lately I did an interview with him about the Arquillian Cube Project.
Jason Porter (@lightguardjp) works at Red Hat and has been involved with Arquillian since the early days. He created the first glassfish adapter and laid groundwork for the website. He also has used it extensively while testing Seam 3 and Apache DeltaSpike. I have the pleasure to work with Jason sometimes, because he is a core member behind the new Red Hat Developers Program (

Remind Me About MEAP
A book can take a year or more to write, so how do you learn that hot new technology today? The answer is MEAP, the Manning Early Access Program. In MEAP, you read a book chapter-by-chapter while it's being written and get the final eBook as soon as it's finished. If you pre-order the book, you'll get it long before it's available in stores. The book will be in MEAP for a little longer but a reasonable number of chapters are already there. So, it's a great chance to get your hands on everything as early as possible!

The Content
The first three chapters introduce you to the techniques and technologies used throughout the book. In general the book assumes, that you're comfortable with Java and familiar with the basics behind testing with JUnit and are able to build a project with Apache Maven.
In chapter one you will have your first taste of an Arquillian test. This includes an introduction to Ike the Arquillian Prince, and become acquainted with the three guiding principals of Arquillian.
Chapter two dives into crafting your first test with Arquillian. You'll learn about containers, executing your test both inside the container of your choice and also within the IDE.
Chapter three discusses the core concept of microdeployments, the creating of a small subsection of your application needed to support and run your tests.
The second part of the book details how you test different parts of your application. Part three calls in the heavy artillery to further aid in frontend testing, applications written in Spring, and lastly receiving reports about your coverage and performance. In the final section you'll learn how to test other languages as well as use other testing tools in other languages.

Writing And Style
The personal style of the book makes it very easy and entertaining to read. I felt, as if I've been directly interacting with the authors and the material, they want to teach me. The examples are clear and the illustrations help a lot with the complex and wide topic of integration testing.

Conclusion And Recommendation
A perfect combination of an entry level book about Arquillian and it's core topic integration testing. It scratches the most important parts which you, as a developer, will have to take care of. And the supporting materials, like code and illustrations give you a clear understanding about the main content of the individual chapters. Alex and Jason are great teachers who know a lot about the technologies used by Arquillian and the various extensions. If you want to start with a book about it: This is it!

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