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Best Books for CAT 2021 Exam Preparation

Updated By Abhinav Chamoli on 28 Nov, 2021 19:58

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Best Books for CAT 2021

Candidates aspiring to appear in the CAT entrance exam should be well aware of the best books for CAT 2021 preparation. CAT is one of the most popular management entrances in India which was conducted on 28th November 2021. Since it's a very popular exam and the score of CAT 2021 are accepted by many top MBA and PGDM colleges in India, it, in turn, establishes the fact that the level of competition in this exam is very high. Studying from the best books for CAT will help you succeed in the exam.

Books are considered to be the best and the most effective medium for gaining knowledge. Detailed knowledge about the different topics present in the CAT syllabus is required to crack the entrance. To meet such needs, candidates refer to various preparatory books. Nowadays the market is flooded with a number of books which leads to confusion among the student about which book to choose. There are certain instructions that have been provided by us in the section below that will help the candidates to choose the best and the most relevant books for the CAT examination.

Candidates are also advised to go through the syllabus of CAT 2021. Only then can they choose appropriate books to prepare for the entrance. Collegedekho has also provided the section-wise list for various sections of the CAT 2021 syllabus. It is advisable to go through the page with utter diligence and concentration to end all confusion related to this particular topic.

Latest Updates

November 28, 7:30 pm: Slot 3 of the CAT 2021 exam was reported to be a bit difficult as compared to the other 2 slots with Quant being the most difficult section of this slot. Check the CAT 2021 Slot 3 question paper analysis for more details.

November 28, 4:00 pm: Slot 2 of CAT 2021 was Moderate in difficulty level with some students reporting that it was a bit easier than Slot 1. Check out the CAT 2021 Slot 2 detailed question paper analysis here.

November 28, 12:00 pm: Slot 1 of the CAT 2021 exam was reported to be Moderate but lengthy. The no. of questions dropped down to 66 this year. Check out the detailed section-wise analysis of CAT 2021 here.

November 27:Aspirants appearing for the CAT 2021 exam tomorrow should note these important points to ace the exam.

November 27:As the big day draws closer, it is normal for CAT aspirants to feel more anxious. Check out these CAT last day preparation tips to help you relax and fare well in the exam.

Upcoming Management Exams :

  • XAT

    Exam date: 02 Jan, 2022

Section-Wise Best Books for CAT Preparation 2021

The syllabus of CAT 2021 can be divided into the following sections - Quantitative Aptitude, Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension and Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning. Candidates should prepare separately for the different sections of the syllabus. We have provided section-wise preparatory books for preparation of CAT 2021 in the table below:

Quantitative Aptitude

  • Arun Sharma's How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT

  • Sarvesh K Verma's Quantum CAT

  • Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinha

  • NCERT Mathematics books for Class 8, 9 & 10

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

  • Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension by Arihant Publication

  • R.S. Aggarwal's A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning

  • Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay's How to Prepare for Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for CAT

  • The Pearson Guide to Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning by Nishit Sinha

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning

  • Arun Sharma's How to Prepare for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning for CAT

  • Nishit K. Sinha's Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for the CAT

  • NCERT books

  • Word Power Made Easy by NORMAN LEWIS

CAT Preparation Books for Quantitative Aptitude

QA can be a time-consuming section where your approach to the questions matters a lot for success. It is considered to be the toughest of all sections and a lot of practice is required to build up speed and accuracy in this section. Plus, you will find that each teacher / author has their own set of tips and tricks to solve questions but what matters is the method you are most compatible with. Given below are some of the best books you can use for CAT QA preparation.

BookAuthor/PublisherWhat Makes it Good
How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CATArun SharmaOne of the best and highly recommended books for preparing numerical section. The difficulty-level wise division makes it easy to understand for a candidate at any level. Published by TMH, it is also quite reliable. 
Quantum CATSarvesh K VermaThis books features a wide variety of questions and maintains the level of difficulty as well. It explains multiple ways to solve a single question, which helps to understand difficult concepts.
Quantitative Aptitude for the CATNishit K. SinhaThis book is published by the Pearson education and covers new updates and additions including equations, coordinate geometry, number system, etc.
Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive ExaminationAbhijit GuhaPublished by Tata McGraw-Hill, this book covers almost all topics required for CAT preparation.

Also Read:How to Prepare for CAT Quantitative Ability (QA) - Check Expert Advice, Tips and Tricks

Similar Exams :

CAT Preparation Books for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning

DI&LR is a section where a candidate's logical and analytical abilities are tested. The section requires a proper understanding of concepts and an analytical approach towards any given question. Unlike QA, success in this section is not merely dependent on tips and tricks but it also requires immense practice and out-of-the-box thinking to make solving difficult questions easier. These are some of the best books to prepare for the DILR section in CAT 2021.

BookAuthorWhat Makes it Good
How to Prepare for Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning for CATArun SharmaOne of the top-recommended books for CAT preparation, it is a good all-round choice containing an ample number of problems, teachers quick solving methods, and is updated as per the latest syllabus.
Logical Reasoning & Data Interpretation for the CATNishit K. SinhaSinha's book has good coverage of basics as well as advanced concepts used in DILR. His approach to teaching by using examples is preferred by many students.
A Modern Approach to Logical ReasoningR.S. AggarwalR S Aggarwal is one of the most well-known authors on this list. His book is known for its simplicity of language, which makes it easier to understand for a wider range of students. This is a good book for basics but cannot be recommended for advanced studies.
How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for CATArun SharmaA reasoning book written with CAT in mind, this book contains clear explanations of different topics followed by practice questions. Provides a step-by-step increment in difficulty level, which makes it easy to advance to a higher level of questions.

Also Read: How to Prepare for CAT Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning - Expert Advice, Tips and Tricks

CAT Preparation Books for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension

VARC is a section that focuses on how well a candidate is able to use and understand English. It requires proper knowledge of grammar, decent vocabulary, good reading speeds and the ability to find out important information from long passages. Candidates who are regular readers get an advantage in this section but it still can be cracked with the help of regular practice and a good book. Some of the best VARC books for CAT are as follows.

BookAuthorWhat Makes it Good
A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal ReasoningR.S. AggarwalR S Aggarwal's take on Verbal Reasoning is again given in simple, easy to understand language with lots of questions to practice available in the book. The book has simple explanations and is the best choice for a beginner.
Word Power Made EasyNormal LewisThe go-to recommendation when it comes to improving Vocabulary, this is the most popular book on this list. It is not written particularly for CAT but still provides an excellent resource to learn new words, which is very valuable for success in VARC.
The Pearson Guide to Verbal Ability & Logical ReasoningNishit SinhaA good book having that covers both VA and RC sections nicely.
How to Prepare for Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension for CATArun Sharma & Meenakshi UpadhyayApart from various tips and tricks to tackle different questions, this book also has the latest exam pattern so that the candidates can become familiar with the paper.

Also Read:How to Prepare for CAT VARC (Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension) - Expert Advice, Tips

While these books have been recommended to tackle the CAT question paper, you must also try and stay updated with the latest national and international news by reading newspapers and magazines regularly, by watching news channels and listening to the radio. Keeping a track of daily news will help you achieve success in further admission rounds of B-Schools, which may include GD & PI and WAT.

How to Select Books for CAT 2021

Candidates should keep the pointers given below in mind while choosing books for the preparation of CAT 2021

  • Candidates should always go for the books which have been published recently and is of the latest edition. The syllabus of the entrance keeps on getting changed and updated from time to time. Preparing from the books of the latest edition and publishing year will help the candidates to know about the updated version of the syllabus.

  • Candidates should select books which mainly focus on exam preparation strategy, sample papers and previous years’ question papers. 

  • They should also go for the books written by renowned authors and published from reputed publishing houses. It is to be noted that the popularity and goodwill can only be gained if the content is good. Certain books are popular for a reason, they provide the candidates with authentic information which can turn out to be effective in the preparation process.

  • Candidates can also refer to the books and study materials provided by the coaching institutes. These books explain difficult topics in simple ways. 

  • They should always compare the content of a few books dealing with similar topics before choosing one for the purpose of preparation.

Also Read :

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Related Questions

Sir, I am a college student studying for the CAT. Could you please tell me how I should plan for it?

-Abhishek negiUpdated on May 11, 2021 08:21 AM
  • 1 Answer
Rahul Raj, Student / Alumni

Dear Student,

We recommend that you go through our CAT 2021 Preparation Strategy & Study Plan Exam Page for CAT preparation. Other resources that may be useful in preparing for the CAT 2021 Entrance Exam are listed below:

If you have any additional questions or would like to learn more about the CAT Exam, please fill out our Common Application Form and one of our education experts will contact you and provide all the relevant ...


Hi, I am candidate of Socially and Educationally Backward Class (SEBC). can i apply for CAT 2020 from SEBC category?

-Kunal shelkeUpdated on September 18, 2020 03:51 PM
  • 1 Answer
Abhinav Chamoli, CollegeDekho Expert

Dear Student,

CAT 2020 does not have any seat reservations for Socially and Economically Backward Students (SEBC). You can find more information about the same in our article on the CAT 2020 seat reservation policy.

Please feel free to write back to us if you require any other information. For help with admission to MBA colleges in India, please fill our Common Application Form (CAF) or call our helpline number 18005729877.

Thank you.


I don't have any old EWS certificate and my new certificate will come after 16th sept. Can I submit the undertaking without any old certificate as of now??

-AyushiUpdated on September 18, 2020 02:47 PM
  • 1 Answer
Abhinav Chamoli, CollegeDekho Expert

Dear Student,

You have to submit any available certificates with the CAT 2020 undertaking. However, CAT 2020 exam dates have now been revised and the deadline to submit the CAT 2020 application form has been extended to 23rd September to help candidates get sufficient time to arrange any certificates.

Please feel free to write back if you have any other queries,

Thank you.


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FAQs about CAT Books

Should I select separate books for all the sections of CAT?

It totally depends on you. You can choose a separate book for all the sections or buy a common book for all the sections for CAT preparation.

What factors should be considered while selecting the best books for CAT?

You should choose the books which explain things in a detailed and simple manner. Besides this, books that which also have sample questions along with shortcut techniques to solve those type of question are also recommended.

How to select the best books for CAT 2021?

You can select the best books which cover each and every topic of CAT or you can select a separate book for all the sections. It is recommended that you must select the books that also include a few sample papers.

Which are the best books to prepare for CAT 2021?

There are many best books available for each section of CAT 2021. Some of them are Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning by R.S Aggarwal, Analytical Reasoning by MK Pandey and Quick Learning Objective General English by R.S.Aggarwal and Vikas Aggarwal.

Where can I buy CAT best books?

You can buy books for CAT from online stores such as Flipkart, Amazon or Meripustak. Besides this, you can also purchase them from the market.

Do the CAT preparation books recommended by experts have sample papers?

Yes, most of the books available for CAT preparation contain sample papers. You can check the book before buying it.

Is studying from books enough for CAT preparation?

No, books are not enough for CAT preparation. You should try to solve the maximum number of previous years’ question paper of CAT to improve your percentile.

What are some of the best books to prepare for CAT through self-study?

You can refer to the NCERT Books of Class 10th, 11th and 12th. Besides this, Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning by R.S Aggarwal and Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinha are also recommended for self-study.

Which books are best for Quantitative Aptitude of CAT?

Some of the recommended books for Quant are Sarvesh K Verma's Quantum CAT, Arun Sharma's How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT or Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT by Nishit K. Sinha.

Are NCERT books enough for CAT preparation?

No, you should not depend on NCERT books for complete preparation of CAT exam. You should refer to a few other books which are recommended by toppers and experts.

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