At last night's VDUNY meeting I talked about a whole bunch of new features in SQL Server 2008 for database developers. And because this is a favorite topic of mine a lot of the discussion revolved around Transact-SQL.
And you can't really talk about Transact-SQL without the name Itzik Ben-Gan coming up at least once or twice. Itzik is arguably the person who knows more about using T-SQL than anyone else on the planet, including the people who develop the language at Microsoft. And of course, you can't mention Itzik at a user group without recommending this book:
If you develop applications using SQL Server - any version, not just SQL Server 2005 - then you absolutely must have this book in your library. It doesn't matter if you are brand new to SQL Server or (like me) you have been a SQL Server consultant and trainer for over ten years - you will find information in this book that you never knew you didn't know, and you'll find techniques that will make you a better SQL developer every day.
Yeah, it's that good.
Just to make sure no one thinks that Itzik is here behind me with a gun, this is a purely unsolicited recommendation. I'd just gotten a follow-up email from an attendee, which made me remember the presentation, which made me remember the discussion, which made me remember just how darned good this book is. Buy it and see.
 And because they were foolish enough to say "talk about whatever you'd like." ;-)
 Yes, this is a powerful statement, but I feel comfortable making it because A) I did qualify it with the word "arguably" and B) I've heard enough people on the SQL Server team say the same thing without using the word "arguably."