The “hard way” is typing it all in until you absorb the syntax and spot mistakes. Works well, but Shaw doesn’t cover Python 3.
Author: Dr. Paul Vincent Craven Publisher: CreateSpace Price: £21.99 (free online) ISBN: 978-1500825966
Balances games and programming exercises to keep the learner going. Very popular: available in several languages on the website.
Author: Jeff Knupp Publisher: CreateSpace Price: £13.97 ISBN: 978-1482374810
Get pythonic from the start: concise guide to idiomatic code; best after another text, but suits some brave learners.
Author: Mark Pilgrim Publisher: APress Price: £35.49 (free online) ISBN: 978-1430224150
Dives straight into code then the explanations follow. A concise but comprehensive start that will appeal to independent study types.
Author: Mark Lutz Publisher: O’Reilly Price: £43.50 ISBN: 978-1449355739
Comprehensive doorstop (1600 pages); great for programmers new to Python and (Object Orientation). Covers Python 2.7 and 3.3.