Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Must Have Books for UPSC IAS Preliminary Exam 2013

There are thousands of Indian youngsters who dream to an Indian Officer by clearing IAS exams. Only few of them succeed with  continuous hardwork and determination. So what different they do from others to get such results? Answer clearly lies in the choice of preparatory material they chose and stick to them.

CSAT 2013 will be help in May 2013. UPSC Notification for CSAT 2013 is expected to come out by Febuary 2013.

So many of you who are yet to start the CSAT 2013 preparation must be consfused with one common quesion.. "Which Books to be read to prepare for IAS preliminary examination?"

Below is the list of books that have been presented topicwise.

UPSC IAS Exam is divided into 2 papers

1. General Studies Paper

PAPER 1: Books for General Studies IAS Prelims:

1.General Studies For Civil Services Preliminary Examination 2012 (Paper - 1) by Tata Mcgraw Hill

This book is best refrence book used by most of the CSAT aspirants. It covers almost all the aspects of the General studies syllabus.

2. Books on Indian History and Culture

a) India's Struggle For Independence by Bipan Chandra: The book contains almost everything you need with Prelims and Mains perspective. It covers all the major events that occured from 1857 till Independence of India. This book is preferred by most of the IAS toppers.

b) NCERT (+ 2 level) — Ancient India, Medieval India, Modern India:  Old syllabus book is preferred. If you dont get it then go for History Of Modern India by Bipan Chandra

3. Books on Indian Geography

a) Indian And World Geography (Paper-1) by Majid Hussain : Covers Indian and World Geography syllabus. The book is exclusively written for IAS Prelims exam preparation.

b) NCERT : Physical Geography of India for X - XII Std

c) Good School Atlas

4. Books on Indian Polity:

a) Indian Polity for Civil Services Examinations by Laxmikanth: Best book on Indian polity for Prelims and GS Mains. Also, aspriant having Public Administration as an optional for Mains exams find this book helpful.

b) NCERT (+1 level)—Indian Political System

c) Frontline Magazine

5. Books on Indian Economy:

a) Indian Economy : For Civil Services Examinations 5th Edition by Ramesh Singh :  This book is sufficient for Prelims, Mains and even Interview.

b) Newspapers: ET, Hindu

c) Yojna Magazine


Paper 2 of the CSAT Prelims test your Aptitude and Logical Reasoning Skills alongwith your English Language skills.

The questions have similar pattern since past many years. Books needed for CSAT Paper 2 are mentioned below.

1: TMH CSAT General Studies for Civil Services Preliminary Examination 2013 (Paper - 2):

 This book is exclusively prepared for CSAT Paper 2 by Arun Sharma. TMH General Studies CSAT 2013 is widely preferred among the CSAT aspritants just because it is the complete package for CSAT Paper 2. If  you have basic knowledge of maths and English than this book alone is sufficient for your Paper 2 preparation. It contains all do's and dont's  and shortcut methods that will make you solve all the questions quickly in no time.

Important: If you are a beginner and have not tested your aptitude and logical reasoning skills for a long time then referring below mentioned book will help you sharpen your basic skills. Once you are done with these books then you can start with TMH General Studies CSAT 2013 .

a)  CSAT Civil Services Aptitude Test (Paper – II)  By  Shalini Verma:
The book will help you exercise your basic skills of numeracy and sharpen your logical reasoning skills required for CSAT 2013 prelims.

The above mentioned books are sufficient for your CSAT 2013 Prelims preparation. We will come up with the book lists of  IAS Mains exam preparation and Exam series in our upcoming posts.

In you have any doubt regarding books, do Comment on the Comment Box below and we will be happy to help you with the prompt reply. Do connect with us by Liking our facebook Fanpage to get latest updates.


  1. Thank you so much for the post on books needed for IAS preliminary exam. It was very useful. Although the pattern and syllabus has changed for the mains 2013 exams, I hope you will be able to post the books needed for the mains exam too in a while. Thanks in advance.

  2. I am Nataraj Das from Tripura , I need the names of books preferrable for UPSC entrance

  3. Replies
    1. Hi Shubham

      It completely depends on preparation level. But more or less every aspirant is flooded by these many books by the time of CSAT exams. We have worked really hard on shortlisting these books out of pile of many books to provide best available book options for Civil Services Aspirants.

      Good Luck

  4. Hi,

    I have a doubt. I am now 30 yrs old and planning to write IAS exam in 2014. So, am I eligible to write it? I have seen in some websites saying that you should be not more than 30 yrs on 1st august of the year of the exam. I will be turning 31 after 1st august 2014. So, can I attempt preliminary and main exam?
    Please do help me. Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Roopa.. Yes, ofcourse 30 years is the limit to write the IAS exam ONLY in case of Genral Category (OC) Students. In case of OBC candidates, an additional 3 attempts are allowed upto the age limit of 33. In case of SC/ST students, the age limit is 35. Hope this helps.

  5. Please post the details of books needed for mains preparation as well.. I am planning to take Management as my optional subject. Is Management a tough paper in IAS mains? This is my 1st attempt.
    Also, I am not planning to attend any coaching class. Is self study is going to be enough if I put in hard work. Would appreciate if you post more frequently with more pointers/hints for effective preparation. I do not have a FB account so can't like your page. Hoping to hear from you. Thanks in advance.

  6. was at this stage exactly one year back. i would like to share my personal experience. the book to which i owe so much, THE UPSC INTERVIEW by Dr. Pranav Mahajan under Knowracle Publications. in my words, this is something really good for all the UPSC aspirants

  7. Sir my name is Rahul Kumar. I am 17 years old. I pass my 12th. How sir I start preparation for ias

  8. Sir I am 17 years old and I complete my 12th. Tell me sir how I start preparation for ias