Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Mastering Bitcoin: Unlocking Digital Cryptocurrencies” as Want to Read:
Mastering Bitcoin: Unlocking Digital Cryptocurrencies
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Mastering Bitcoin: Unlocking Digital Cryptocurrencies

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  2,070 ratings  ·  195 reviews
Want to join the technological revolution that's taking the world of finance by storm? Mastering Bitcoin is your guide through the seemingly complex world of bitcoin, providing the requisite knowledge to help you participate in the internet of money. Whether you're building the next killer app, investing in a startup, or simply curious about the technology, this practical ...more
Paperback, 298 pages
Published December 27th 2014 by O'Reilly Media (first published July 1st 2014)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Mastering Bitcoin, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Mastering Bitcoin

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,070 ratings  ·  195 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Mastering Bitcoin: Unlocking Digital Cryptocurrencies
Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I think this is the only book of it's type that really helps you dive down into the technical details of Bitcoin. It's showing it's age a little, but the fundamentals haven't changed all that much. I've been holding BTC for years, but I finally feel like I "understand" it. Thanks for writing this book! ...more
Athan Tolis
Jul 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read Cryptocurrency by Paul Vigna and Michael Casey and I loved it. I was so mesmerized that I immediately sat down and wrote an eight page stream-of-consciousness account of what it left me thinking Bitcoin was. And in doing so I realized that I did not have a full grasp of the detail. Worse still, I also realized that when it comes to cryptocurrency the devil truly is in the detail.

My friends all said “buy some and you’ll soon understand better”

I’m a loser, so I read another book instead. Th
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017, print
As a technologist and investor in Bitcoin, coming from a value investing background, I felt uncomfortable getting lucky investing in Bitcoin based on speculation as it was hard to wrap my mind around the utility and potential of Bitcoin.
Reading Mastering Bitcoin has significantly improved my understanding of the Protocol where I finally feel like I’m starting to get it. The book goes over the technicals of how Bitcoin works from keys, addresses, wallets & transactions, the scripting language, t
Shannon Appelcline
Oct 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
An excellent overview of Bitcoin that simultaneously presents the big picture in a very readable way while also providing very specific details of how the protocol works, complete with examples. Technical writing, as it should be.
Cody Django
Nov 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
A good overview. I was already quite familiar with the architecture of the Bitcoin system but still picked up quite a few new concepts, terms, and mental models. Especially interesting to me were the sections on transaction structure, standard transaction types, merkle trees, bloom filters, the proof-of-work algorithm in the mining process and hierarchical deterministic wallets. Andreas writes clearly (most of the time) and with a readable cadence. That said, pretty much all the info is availabl ...more
Aug 20, 2018 added it
Shelves: a-to-read-next, 2018
History of bitcoin and a very detailed description of bitcoin and blockchain functionality accompanied with source code snippets to see how it is coded in real life applications. Good introduction into blockchgain for techie people.
Tadas Talaikis
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one

Side note. Andreas is too much in love with bitcoin and there were so much hype in the area that everyone forgot 1) this technology is free to access and improve for anyone, and 2) that Bitcoin economic concepts are amateurish and as a consequence - creating procyclical behavior. Way better and useful in practice things for me currently are smart contracts, DApps and private blockchains. And bitcoin... bitcoin is dead here, too slow to move to the next (censorship resistant, like Andreas
Jul 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great peek into the technical aspects of bitcoin/the blockchain. Having read more high level descriptions, I was always curious about the implementation details. This book provides quite a satisfactory introduction to this universe.
Feb 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
First couple chapters are a nice, basic description of Bitcoin protocol, how it works. The rest is technical. Clear.
Ryan West
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a great technical overview of the inner workings of Bitcoin. It gave a good introduction for any intelligent audience, but then dove into all of the technical details. I had to pause to look up some concepts at times, but adding more detail would have made the book too long. This book did not fully cover the economic or business implications of Bitcoin, and was instead intended for developers.
Dec 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Finally the kind of comprehensive treatment on blockchains I was looking for. Incredibly dense with information, might have to reread it in parts. Some glaring structural and pacing issues (I didn't really need to know all the bloody details of multisig wallets before even knowing how blocks are assembled) ...more
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the best (technical) books I have read recently! It provides a lot of information about cryptocurrencies and bitcoin in particular. I like the balance between technical and non-technical information in the book. Plus, the technical one is described in an interesting way (this is often a big challenge). It gave me a good in-depth knowledge about bitcoin.
Gergely Szabo
Andreas is definitely my favorite person in the cryptocurrency world. He makes this deep and complex topic fairly accessible to laymen. The basics of cryptography are explained, however I still recommend reading some introductory material in the field before starting. I will definitely refer back to the book as It includes the hottest topics in the field, like the Lightning Network.
Jeremy Zhang
Mar 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
I wanted to read a book detailing the opportunities and landscape of the industry. But this book delves deep into the technical implementations of Bitcoin. Wasn't exactly what I was looking for. ...more
Hayal şensoy
Jul 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finished recently but I have a quite strong feeling to read it again...
Simon Eskildsen
Jan 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Wanted to understand more about the underlying tech. Decent walk-through at a technical level, but found myself somewhat puzzled by how the author went through some explanations.
Apr 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first book I read on the subject was Antony Lewis' The basics of bitcoins and blockchains, which is an excellent book, and one that I highly recommend. Next, I wanted to read something with more technical details about the various constructs and operations (transaction, block, blockchain formats, hashes, Merkel trees, Bloom filters, etc.), with a view towards acquiring a working skill set for related applications, and I found Imran Bashir's Mastering Blockchain. I went over half of Imran's b ...more
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The ultimate guide to understanding how bitcoin and blockchain technology works under the hood, explained in an easy to read manner, with references and in an ordered way.
Andreas has outdone himself in this one.
Valerie De Pauw
Jan 03, 2021 rated it liked it
The book gives a great high-level insight into Crypto. I think if you are more interested in the technical aspect this is for sure the book for you
Alejandro Guariguata
Nov 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Do you want to understand how Bitcoin works? Read this book.
Dec 25, 2017 added it
This book has a lot of technical stuff most of which went way over my head. Still, I learned a lot from this book.
Sourav Karmakar
May 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
Great to understand the actual working procedure on Bitcoin. The book is between a technical manual on the Bitcoin code and a non-technical explanation of Bitcoin. Still a great read to understand the fundamentals even if you aren't a coder. I read the 2013 edition, not sure if there have been revised editions since then because the 2013 edition is out-of-date in quite a few places, though the basics remain the same. ...more
Sebastian Gebski
Hardly a review (no rating), because what I've read is just an alpha (raw & unedited) version of this book, but it already looks quite promising:
* there's quite a reasonable description of what bitcoin is and how do you cope with it (in functional terms)
* everything has its example
* there's a brief (but reasonably sufficient) description of bitcoin tooling

What do I miss for now?
1.) Mathematical model is completely put aside - treated like magic noone would understand
2.) Book clearly is missing e
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
As good a technical manual as anyone could ask for. The contents of this book are a treat for those curious and with a little bit of background in computer science. Cryptography, bloom filters, peer-to-peer networks, decentralized trust -- it just doesn't get much better than this.

Antonopoulos is a skilled tutor and, for having picked up English as a second (or third) language, does a commendable job of making things that are conceptually murky quite clear. The prose is to the point but not with
Anton Kaliaev
Jan 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
For those who are interested in blockchain development:

- you will acquire basic terminology (mempool, proof-of-work, proof-of-stake, ...)
- you will learn the basics: elliptic curve cryptography (ECC)
- you will find answers to such questions as:
a) why it takes ~10 minutes to generate a block?
b) who sets the target complexity for the new block?

Feel free to skip some chapters, which are no interest to you (e.g. "using a wallet app")

My overall recommendation: read it
Robert Baron
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best book for technical people

If you are like grandma that does not understand technical words you may want to try something else. The thing is that bitcoin is hard to understand at the beginning and also at the end ;) this book has cleared my mind with many things I didn't understand. Awesome book very clear to explain such a difficult topic in depth
Tuhina Singh
Sep 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's a very good overview of Bitcoin technology for a beginner. Has the right mix of high level concept and technical details. At the end of the book the reader has a full grasp of how blockchain for Bitcoin works. Recommended for novices wanting to get hands dirty with nitty gritty of it all. ...more
Marty Jones
Jul 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
Great introduction to Bitcoin. The first two chapters are accessible to all - beyond that, you'll need at least a little bit of a technical background. ...more
Feb 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
clear, concise, delicious
Ben Rothke
Jul 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's not often that a promising technology and hype coalesce. Most recently, that occurred with Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency; while still relatively new, it has created a new global economy. In the second edition of Mastering Bitcoin: Programming the Open Blockchain, author Andreas Antonopoulos creates a first-class Bitcoin reference. It provides the reader with a comprehensive understanding of what Bitcoin is, how it works, and how to use it.

Antonopoulos provides the rea
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Mastering Ethereum: Building Smart Contracts and DApps
  • The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking
  • Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money
  • Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin Is Changing Money, Business, and the World
  • Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor's Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond
  • The Age of Cryptocurrency: How Bitcoin and Digital Money Are Challenging the Global Economic Order
  • The Sovereign Individual: Mastering the Transition to the Information Age
  • The Price of Tomorrow: Why Deflation is the Key to an Abundant Future
  • The Infinite Machine: How an Army of Crypto-hackers Is Building the Next Internet with Ethereum
  • The Little Bitcoin Book: Why Bitcoin Matters for Your Freedom, Finances, and Future
  • Programming Bitcoin: Learn How to Program Bitcoin from Scratch
  • Bitcoin Billionaires: A True Story of Genius, Betrayal, and Redemption
  • Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship
  • Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies: A Comprehensive Introduction
  • The Blocksize War: The battle for control over Bitcoin’s protocol rules
  • Mastering Bitcoin for Dummies: Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies, Mining, Investing and Trading - Bitcoin Book 1, Blockchain, Wallet, Business
  • The Almanack of Naval Ravikant: A Guide to Wealth and Happiness
  • How to DeFi
See similar books…

Goodreads is hiring!

If you like books and love to build cool products, we may be looking for you.
Learn more »
Andreas M. Antonopoulos is a technologist and serial entrepreneur who has become one of the most well-known and well-respected figures in bitcoin. He is the author of two books: “Mastering Bitcoin”, published by O’Reilly Media and considered the best technical guide to bitcoin and “The Internet of Money”, a book about why bitcoin matters.

As an engaging public speaker, teacher and writer, Andreas m

Related Articles

You’d never know it from reading the books listed here, but good science writing is incredibly difficult to pull off. There is both an art...
103 likes · 7 comments
“Bitcoin experts argue that deflation is not bad per se. Rather, deflation is associated with a collapse in demand because that is the only example of deflation we have to study.” 2 likes
“Bitcoin consists of: A decentralized peer-to-peer network (the bitcoin protocol) A public transaction ledger (the blockchain) A set of rules for independent transaction validation and currency issuance (consensus rules) A mechanism for reaching global decentralized consensus on the valid blockchain (Proof-of-Work algorithm)” 2 likes
More quotes…