This book on Amazon is excellent. It’s the BBKA guide to BeeKeeping.
Make sure you buy the second edition – the yellow cover not the purple one.
It’s got everything you need in it to start beekeeping – although my advice of join a local group still stands.
You need hands on support when you start beekeeping and being there on apiary training sessions is really useful. You’ll get hands on experience before you’ve bought a hive. Ideal if you decide after a couple of sessions that it’s not the hobby for you.
Joining a club also gets you members of the BBKA and that comes with insurance, and the BBKA News every month. Access to training sessions come from your local branch. You’ll meet beekeepers and will find one who’ll support you by giving you advice and help once you get your own bees.
Some groups expect you to attend training sessions and include a set number of apiary sessions before you’re allowed to get your own bees. Of course there’d be nothing stopping you from buying bees from outside the club – but commercial prices will be much higher than club prices.
When you are confident in doing an inspection on your own then it’s time to get your own bees. There’s not much point in getting bees if you need someone there with you each time you open them up. Of course that’s not to say we don’t like company when inspecting our hives – but you shouldn’t need guiding through an inspection after a few goes.