I got Brackeen's book but in my opinion, it is really not for newbies, but for at least intermediates. If you only know Java basics (like me), stay away from it for a while and get knowledge of threads, exceptions, Swing, LinkedLists and other advanced topics first. You should be very familiar with java, I think.
That's what I love about this book: it is for game dev newbies, not
Java newbies, so it can focus on what is important: Game Dev!
So, learn Java first, then read this book, it is worth it!