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I'm looking for a book to learn engineering mathematics from. I graduated from college around 15 years ago, but I'm thinking about taking some sort of technical engineering masters degree. (I haven't decided on an exact course, but I decided it would be prudent to start reviewing engineering math now). I'm leaning towards some kind of Civil Engineering though.

The topics I need to review are differential equations, matrix algebra and possibly some other topics relevant to engineering math such as partial differential equations, and so forth. I guess the main thing is to start getting my mind used to doing math again after all this time.

When I was an undergraduate I used Kreyszig. It's not bad, and I started reviewing from that book, however I have found at times it is quite terse. It's strange, some things I can remember quite clearly, but other topics I've almost completely forgotten (although I know for a fact I studied them). Are there any books that are more readable?

I've looked at Peter V. O'Neil "Advanced Engineering Mathematics", this is also OK, but I'm not sure if it is any more readable than Kreyszig. Some topics he seems to do better, others I think Kreyszig has the edge.

Also there is Dennis G. Zill "Advanced Engineering Mathematics", however I'm reluctant to look at his book, as I used his Differential Equations book as an undergraduate, and while it was OK, I wasn't overwhelmed by it. I understand that his engineering mathematics book reuses material from his differential equations book.

So are there any other readable engineering math books I should consider?

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I have converted the question to community wiki, as it's asking for a big list of references and there is no single right answer. – Zev Chonoles Jul 29 '11 at 4:54

Dettman's Introduction to Linear Algebra and Differential Equations are a good review/introduction on the subjects as well as complex numbers. It's also very cheap for a mathematics book.

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