Oliver, Robert. History of the English Calvinistic Baptists, 1771-1892: From John Gill to C. H. Spurgeon. Carlisle PA: Banner of Truth, 2006.
Sometimes the best way to learn doctrine is through historical studies. The historical narrative lends interest. But more than that it provides context for why certain positions were held and how they changed and developed over time. This particular volume provides a good introduction to the issues of hyper-Calvinism vs. the free offer of the gospel, antinomianism, the eternal Sonship of Christ, ad open or closed communion.
It also provides good biographical sketches not only of well-known Baptists such as Gill, the Rylands, Fuller, and Spurgeon but also of lesser known men such as Benjamin Beddome or Abraham Booth. For someone interested in reading Baptist primary sources, this book is a good place to get reading ideas.
The history here is carefully done. The book is based on the author’s dissertation. But it has the warmth one would expect from a Banner book.