It breaks down emotional skills into personal competence skills -- self-awareness and self-management -- and social competence skills -- social awareness and relationship management. It's accompanied by an online assessment that gives you a score in each of the four areas, and helps you devise a plan to improve in the areas you need. It also discusses over a dozen strategies in each area that you can practice to improve.
So far, I really like it, it's very straightforward and the strategies it offers are really concrete and not terribly difficult to practice. My partner is also reading it, to support my own efforts (I need it more than he does), he is further along into it than I am and he's also been really impressed with it so far.
Also, observe what other people do, decide if you want to act that way, and then try it yourself.
IMO the best you'll get is a distribution of probabilities for what a particular event means, so don't expect hard and fast rules, but sometimes that's enough.
This has been popularised into Spiral Dynamics. A search on this will get you a great base to start from.
Best book I've found on it is called Igniting Inspiration. Skip the first chapter to get to the good stuff.
Basic overview is that we each operate from a primary motivation. Eg power, universal truth and rules, material gain, harmony etc.
When you can see the signals for each type, you can speak their language and also understand yourself better in the process and why we do the (often irrational) things we do.
That big toothed guy from Family Guy, Tony Robbins actually has some not dumb things to say about the subject of human communication, thinking, mind "reading" etc.
This is probably the only thing I remember from reading Dale Carnegie.