Recommended Books for IAS Prelims Exam:

IAS Prelims Exam - India Year Book

This Article lists the various recommended Books for UPSC IAS Prelims Exam for both General Studies (Paper-!) and UPSC CSAT (Paper 2). Reading the right books is very important for getting through the hurdle of IAS Prelims. The careful and thorough study of the mentioned IAS Prelims books will help the candidates prepare well for the UPSC IAS prelims exam and helping the students to crack the prelims.

The UPSC IAS Prelims exam is basically divided into 2 papers. So, the books for IAS Prelims is also divided into 2 sections- one for UPSC General Studies Books and one for UPSC CSAT books. Click here to read the UPSC prelims Syllabus.

Remember: These are the list of books that are mostly recommended by the IAS toppers and widely used by the IAS aspirants. This article does not try to reject the use of any other book.


Books for IAS Prelims Exam – General Studies(Paper 1):

The General Studies section of the UPSC IAS Prelims exam can be more or less divided into 8 broad sections. These are:

  1. Indian History
  2. Geography
  3. Indian Polity
  4. Indian Economy
  5. Indian Art and Culture
  6. Environment related issues
  7. General Science
  8. Current issues of importance

The recommended UPSC Books for each of the above sections are listed below:


Indian History Books for IAS Prelims exam:

  • NCERT Books are must for getting a grip and making a strong base for further reading of Indian History. Reading of Old Ncert Books of Class 10th, 11th and 12th are recommended over the new Ncerts as they provide a greater understanding. Every student must get old Ncerts for Indian History especially old Class 12th Ncert by Bipin Chandra.
  • Class 10th and 11th old Ncert are not available online and have to be purchased from  local bookshop only.
  • Class 12th Old Ncert book – History of Modern Indiais available online under new cover. Click Here to buy this book.
  • For Further Reading, India’s Struggle for Independence By Bipin Chandra is the most recommended book. Reading this book will not only help in prelims but will also prepare the Modern History topic of the UPSC IAS Mains General Studies Paper 1. Click Here to Buy This Book.


Geography Books for  IAS Prelims Exam:


Indian Polity Books for IAS Prelims Exam:

M Lakshmikanth Book for Indian Polity in Hindi - Books for IAS Prelims ExamM. Lakshmikanth Book in English -Books for IAS Prelims Exam


Indian Economy Books for IAS Prelims Exam:


Indian Art and Culture Books for IAS Prelims Exam:


Environment Books for IAS Prelims Exam:


General Science Books for IAS Prelims Exam:

  • NCERT General Science books for class 6th to 10th.
  • Spectrum’s Developments in Science and Technology is a must read. Click Here to Buy.


Current Issues for IAS Prelims Exam:

  • The Hindu Newspaper. Daily Reading of The Hindu is essential for being in touch with current issues. Note down the current important issues and then try to read them deeply.
  • Any good magazine like Civil Service Chronicle. Don’t go for 3-4 magazines as it will only waste the time. Just stick to 1 or 2 good magazines.
  • Try to link the current events with the above mentioned syllabus of the UPSC.


Other Must Buy Books for IAS Prelims Exam:

  • India Year Book – By the Publication Division of India. (if you have the old Edition, that will also be sufficient)
  • Also a good Objective Questions book for UPSC prelims preparation is needed for daily practice. Because when you solve questions mixed  from different topics, you really get to know the level of your preparation. You should definitely Buy Lucent’s Objective General Knowledge for daily Practice.
  • And Lastly, Buy General Studies Manual. It is a great source of reference for IAS Prelims exam. You don’t need to read it all. But anything that is missing in the above reference books can be easily found in this manual. Also, 1000+ Practice questions are given in this book on each topic.



Books for IAS Prelims Exam – Aptitude Test/CSAT(Paper 2):

If you have a good grip on Aptitude topics, then you don’t need any special book for this paper as the questions are quite general in nature. Just buy a good Practice Book for UPSC CSAT like General Studies for Civil Services Preliminary Examination Paper. It will give the students an idea about the pattern of the paper and It contains 1000+ questions on UPSC CSAT  on each different topic. Click Here to Buy UPSC CSAT practice book.

For Beginners, following books are recommended to get a decent base on Aptitude:

  • R. S Aggarwal – Quantitative Aptitude For Competitive Examinations. Click Here to Buy
  • R.S Aggarwal –  A Modern Approach To Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning. Click Here to Buy

  • Practice with the Previous Years UPSC CSAT Solved Papers. Click Here to Buy.




Sharing increases Knowledge!

Please Share the “Books for IAS Prelims Exam for GS and Aptitude” with others and Leave your comments if you find this helpful. Help us in Sharing the Knowledge

Please Leave a Comment