Toss out that MySQL book. The only thing you need to store location data is Google Maps.
My Maps is a feature that lets you create your own mashup on a map. Once a map is created, it can be shared with a link, or in Google Earth with a KML file. And now, it is also available via RSS–GeoRSS, to be more specific.
While viewing any My Map, click the RSS link to see the GeoRSS version of the map. In addition to all the other information about points on the map, such as business name and address, you get latitude and longitude coordinates.
This RSS feed can then be read in by any script you write instead of making a database call. The Google Maps API can even call GeoRSS files directly, loading all your locations in a single line.