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Best GMAT Books and Resources 2014

Update: Wondering which GMAT study materials are the most up to date and comprehensive in 2014? Look no further. We reviewed the most popular GMAT study materials on the market, and updated our list of the best GMAT resources available.

Enjoy!

The first step in preparing for the GMAT is finding the best resources. With the welter of test prep companies touting their respective books, this first step can be downright daunting.

Below is a list of the only GMAT books and resources you will ever need to use. So don’t feel overwhelmed. Your prep starts and stops with the material below.

Best of the Best Books – Manhattan GMAT (MGMAT)

This series is the GMAT bible. Don’t just learn a bunch of nifty tricks; learn the fundamentals behind the questions, so you won’t just be flailing about test day, relying only on guessing strategies.

 

The GMAT Official Guide (OG)

Some would argue that the OG material is the actual bible, and the rest mere Apocrypha. After all, these are the guys (and gals!) who actually write the questions you’ll see test day. But don’t rely on the Official Guides for strategies (the way you would with MGMAT), use Official material for the best source of GMAT questions.

  • Official Guide 12th Edition
  • Official Guide 11th Edition
  • Official Guide 13th Edition
  • GMATPrep Tests (downloadable)

 

Magoosh.com

Want to get accustomed to taking a stressful test on a computer? Magoosh (that’s us!) offers hundreds upon hundreds of practice questions, all with the stress-inducing timer. Want to learn the fundamentals a la MGMAT, but on a computer? Magoosh has hundreds of lessons modules to get you up and running. Sure we’re a little biased toward our own study prep program, but it’s seriously a great online resource! Check out our free GMAT General eBook here.

  • Lesson Modules
  • Questions
  • Mock Tests

 

FREE Magoosh GMAT Math and Idioms Flashcards

Study on the go, even without internet!

 

Nova

Need even more math questions? Nova’s GMAT Math Bible is filled with nail-bitingly tough Data Sufficiency questions and Problem Solving ones.

 

PowerScore

PowerScore built its reputation as an LSAT company with its LSAT Critical Reasoning Bible. For those who don’t know, the LSAT is the GMAT Critical Reasoning section on steroids, so you can bet that PowerScore really knows how to dissect one of the most difficult question types on the GMAT.

 

Forums

No man is an island, John Donne once intoned. So don’t be an island, and get out there with you newly acquired GMAT knowledge. Think you can provide a strong explanation to a question? Help the community out. Stumped? Then there are experts waiting to give you a hand over at the GMAT forums. You’ll probably even run into our GMAT expert Mike while you’re at GMAT Club!

 

Don’t see your favorite study materials? Want a review of a book we haven’t gotten to yet? Let us know below!

About the Author

Chris Lele has been helping students excel on the GRE, GMAT, and SAT for the last 10 years. He is the Lead Content Developer and Tutor for Magoosh. His favorite food is wasabi-flavored almonds. Follow him on Google+!

18 Responses to Best GMAT Books and Resources 2014

  1. Ad October 1, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    I have found this page very informative & unique. I have a simple question regarding the verbal section. Some people suggest that doing the official guide and the verbal book thoroughly is in itself sufficient for a good score .One is further advised to practice from the GMAT prep software after completion of the mentioned two resources.Do you reckon that it is sufficient practice ? However, if after completing the above, one needs to do more

    Could you kindly suggest a question bank for practicing the best

    1) SC questions
    2) CR questions
    3) RC questions

    It doesn’t necessary have to be from one publisher or source. Based on your recommendation, One could buy 3 different books for the verbal section, each representing the best practice sets for SC,RC & CR respectively

    For eg . In one of your earlier reviews you have recommended Kaplan 800 for RC but not so much for SC . So I guess the RC questions in Kaplan 800 can be used to supplement the official material

    Does Magoosh has a similar question bank for practice that mirrors the level & quality of OG questions ?

    Thanks

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele October 2, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

      Hi Ad,

      Generally speaking, I’d say the official materials are pretty sufficient, since there are such a plethora of questions. I’m more partial to using MGMAT guides for the foundation building and official questions for the actual passage (MGMAT verbal questions are kind of a mixed bag).

      The Magoosh questions are pretty solid across the board. I think we shine in SC questions, though. For more RC practice, I’d recommend doing official material from official LSAT tests. You’ll also get oodles of Critical Reasoning style questions from those tests (each 100-question test has 50 CR questions. There are 25 RC questions).

      Hope that helps :)

  2. Alessandra Almeida July 3, 2014 at 12:44 pm #

    Hi Chris,
    I am just starting to study and as a complete begginer I am thinking about going with Kaplan. My question is if I should buy only the Kaplan Gmat 2014 Strategies, Practice, And Review With 2 Practice Tests or if I should also buy the Math & Verbal Foundations and Workbook. I would also like to ask you if you have an idea of the maximum age that the universities usually accept for their students. I am Brazilian and 36 years old. Thank you.

  3. Chu June 29, 2014 at 7:18 pm #

    Hi Chris,

    Was hoping i can get a recommendation on what Quant and Verbal books to get.
    I already have have the manhattan 4th ed SC book. I need a CR book as that is a weak area for me. Which will you recommend between the Manhattan and the Powerscore.

    Also, any feedback on using the Manhattan Advanced quant book. I have good basic math skills but I seem to not consistently get higher scores.

    Thanks

  4. Yegnesh January 16, 2014 at 12:35 pm #

    Hey Chris,
    I have just signed up for Magoosh. Really enjoying the practice question and lessons.
    I am finding the verbal really tough. So thinking about joining Full courses. I am really confused between Veritas Prep And Manhattan GMAT. What would you recommend.
    Can you please provide some insight?

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele January 16, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

      Hi Yegnesh,

      It’s really hard to choose between those two, which are the best regarded in the industry. I think MGMAT has the more rigorous hiring process, they take only the top 1% test takers. That doesn’t mean you will automatically have a better experience at MGMAT; you may very well have an excellent teacher in Veritas.

      The next factor is content. Since MGMAT’s materials are some of the best regarded on the market (though I think their RC passages are somewhat weak), whereas Veritas doesn’t really have much of presence, MGMAT may be the way to go.

      Ultimately, try out both places to see which one feels right for you.

      Good luck :)

      • Raj July 22, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

        Hey Chris,

        I did my GMAT and gotta 370. I didn’t prepare as well as I could’ve. I think I lack the basics of Quantitative mostly. Do you recommend taking a Manhattan online prep course? My goal is 650-700. What do you suggest?

        Thanks

  5. Sumanth January 15, 2014 at 9:52 am #

    Hi Chris ,

    I have a GMAT scheduled in 3rd week of feb ,I have been doing fairly well in quant and only cause of worry is in verbal ,I have been preparing from Barrons ,Could you suggest me the best way to prep for the verbal part and which materials will help me achieve that in the give time frame !

    Thanks in advance !!

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele January 16, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

      Hi Sumanth,

      Even though Barron’s is a highly respected name in test prep, it falls woefully short for the GMAT, especially in the verbal section. I would ditch that book as soon as possible :), and pick up a copy of the MGMAT Sentence Correction and Critical Reasoning guides. Also make sure to use the GMAT Official Guide so that you can practice those techniques on actual test questions.

      Hope that helps, and good luck!

  6. sid January 9, 2014 at 4:16 am #

    Hey Chris,

    CR has been a Critical Issue.. wats it the best way to beat it and wat are the books to b followed for good.

    Thanks,
    Sid

  7. uppala praveen January 6, 2014 at 4:00 am #

    hi chris, i’m totally new to GMAT and i want to give GMAT this september…so could u please, which one (the one which provides me the resources) can take me from basic to advanced level…my intention is to get 750+..so that there will be more chances to get a seat in HBS..awaiting ur reply…thankyou

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele January 8, 2014 at 11:49 am #

      Great! I admire your ambition :).

      A great resource to get you acquainted with the GMAT is our free ebook:

      http://magoosh.com/gmat/2012/gmat-ebook/

      In here, you’ll not only find the “Holy Grail” of resources to help you go from the basic-level to the most advanced, but you will also have access to a variety of study schedules to help you stay on track.

      Let me know if you have any questions along the way :).

  8. Nikhilesh November 27, 2013 at 7:12 am #

    I came across Magoosh when I was searching the web for best GMAT Prep course. I took the one week trial and loved it so much that I ordered the whole GMAT module. I then followed the 12 week preparation Schedule and loved it. Manhattan and Magoosh are must for any GMAT taker. Gonna give my GMAT in second week of January. Keeping fingers crossed.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele December 3, 2013 at 10:24 am #

      I’m happy you are enjoying Magoosh. Good luck on the GMAT!

  9. Ratna April 25, 2013 at 1:41 am #

    Chris,
    I have been reading your blogs and reviews. I agree with most of your points. I did have similar opinion about Kaplan’s (i used) modules.

    However, how do you rate Veritas Prep materials against

    Powerscore for CR
    MGMAT for SC
    Nova for Quant

    Cheers,
    Ratna

    • Chris Lele
      Chris Lele April 26, 2013 at 11:15 am #

      That’s a great question! From what I’ve seen Veritas Prep has some pretty good questions to practice with. They aren’t really big on the fundamentals though. It seems they rely mainly on big picture strategies. In that sense, they are more like Nova (great as a question bank but wanting in terms of guidance).

      Powerscore is the reverse in that it really helps break down the logic and principles behind a question type so that you can better tackle actual GMAT questions.

      Finally, MGMAT combines the best of both worlds: great questions and comprehensive coverage of the fundamentals.

      Hope that helps!

  10. Eulalia February 27, 2013 at 12:17 pm #

    Hi Chris, I am a college grad (December 2012] with a degree in poli sci. I was wanting to take the GMAT asap but I would like to know what are the best tools/study guides to prepare for the exam. Thank you.

    • Chris Lele
      Chris February 27, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

      Hi Eulalia,

      The best tools is definitely the Original Guide by GMAC, together with the two practice tests. These questions were written by those who write the questions you’ll see test day. Manhattan GMAT is also very helpful, esp. from the standpoint of walking you through concepts–from basic to advanced.

      Hope that helps!


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