The good news is that there is more recognition and compensation being awarded to IT workers who have SCJP accreditation. The hard part is getting that accreditation in the first place though.
Fortunately, there are technical book authors out there who are willing to give you their knowledge and skills in the SCJP field. One technical book often cited is the SCJP Sun Certified Programmer for Java 5 Study Guide by authors Katherine Sierra and Bert Bates. This book aims to help you pass Exam 310-055 which is said to be based on the Java 2 Platform Standard Edition 5.0.
Other books you could consider to help you pass the Exam 310-055 are: SCJP Exam for J2SE 5: A Concise and Comprehensive Study Guide for The Sun Certified Java Programmer Exam from Paul Sanghera, PhD.; the non-profit Java 5 publication that can be accessed at http://java.boot.by/scjp-tiger/; the SCJP 5.0 Tiger Study Guide from author Mikalai Zaikin; and the SCJP 5.0 Study Notes from author Dave Allen.
At about.com, you may find a review about The Complete Java 2 Certification Study Guide, Fifth Edition, which the reviewer says is the top study guide available for Exam 310-055 accreditation. The book is authored by Phil Heller and Simon Roberts and published by Sybex in 2005. The advantage of buying this book is that you can use it to pass SCJP accreditation and even use it later to train for your Sun Certified Java Developer Exam accreditation. Sun Certified Java Developer accreditation is more concerned with RMI, Swing/JFC, and AWT know-how.