Books are useful for getting an overview of your topic and learning about the terminology used to describe your topic. While journal articles will have the latest research and developments, they are often focused on a very narrow aspect of a topic. Once you have the "big picture" you can then use the engineering databases (Articles tab) to find journal articles looking at a specific engineering problem.
The UNM Libraries organize books using Library of Congress call numbers. The Library of Congress classification code for civil engineering is the same for general engineering and is located on LL2 of the Centennial Science and Engineering Library::