I'm not an expert here, but I'll post anyway. I really liked this book: Chick Days: An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Raising Chickens from Hatching to Laying
It is, as it says, an absolute beginner's guide. In fact, I think I'll donate mine to the library, since after your first set of chickens, it's nowhere near as valuable. But for a first-time chicken raiser, i loved this book. Of course, the more in-depth books come in handy, too. But for anyone on their first chicks, this is a great book.
I've learned so much from it. How to bake bread, how to build a nest box, gardening, etc. When we bought our house in a more rural town a friend gave it to me as a joke. Ha! The cover is practically falling off.
I am totally in agreement with SMALL-SCALE POULTRY FLOCK by HARVEY USSERY
The Storey's Guides are okay for starters, but they really don't give you a good sense that you can raise your own feed or go chemical-free. They are also very heavy on what can go wrong. There is a place for that, but the amount of emphasis really left me feeling nervous about having chickens. Then once I had chickens I was startled by how easy they were!
I wish I had been able to start with Ussery's book. I actually bought a copy off Amazon before I even returned the library's copy (which I devoured!)
When I was considering getting myself chickens for my small city-girl backyard, it was a great resource about breeds, how to care for them, and it's really beautiful. Basically it's just a super-informative love-fest about chickens, written by a bunch of experts.
Storeys Guide to Raising Chickens here also. I will say that we have read several books on chickens and while they all were worthwhile all together they do not contain near the information you can find here at BYC and a couple of other sites on the web.