I recently had the opportunity to review a copy of Mike Oryszak's (@next_connect) book "Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Business Application Blueprints". The book illustrates practical examples of solutions built on SharePoint's social features, content and document management, as well as day-to-day team collaboration. While the solutions in the book are useful on their own, they also illustrate best practices for solution design and implementation and educate the reader on the methods of working with core SharePoint components.
The book begins with core SharePoint components such as features, layouts, sites, templates, etc., but by the time you're in the middle of the book, you're combining features and writing code and script to customize those features and tailor them to your business needs. Cover to cover, this book will help you to understand the evolution of a solution from start to finish, and teach you the best practices for those solutions along the way.
This book is a great read whether you're a developer, administrator, or just looking to learn more about how to build business applications within SharePoint. "Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Business Application Blueprints" is available in either paperback or Kindle format from Amazon.com.