CAT 2021 - Best Books for CAT Prep – QA, VARC, DILR – Section wise Books recommended by MBA Experts

CAT 2021 Best Books for CAT preparation. Find here the complete list of section-wise best books for CAT Preparation i.e. Verbal Ability, Quantitative Aptitude, and Logical Reasoning section, as recommended by MBA experts.
Must Read Books for CAT Aspirants

Best Books for CAT 2021 Preparation: CAT 2021 is undoubtedly one of the toughest MBA entrance exams in India. Preparing for the CAT demands 100 percent dedication and determination from the aspirants. In addition, candidates need the right resources, tools, and study materials to ace the exam. And this is where the books for CAT 2021 entrance exam come into the picture.

Every aspirant preparing for the CAT requires a reliable and informative set of books that cover the important topics for the exam. With the right set of MBA Prep Books, candidates aiming to score 99+ percentile in the CAT Exam can turn their dream into a reality.

In this article, we will look at a comprehensive list of CAT Preparation Books recommended by MBA experts and past aspirants alike. As the official CAT 2021 notification has already been released by IIM Indore, getting these books right now, as part of the MBA study material will give you ample time to make their best use and ace the CAT 2021.

We have listed below the bestselling CAT 2021 Preparation books for all the three sections of the CAT 2021 i.e., Quantitative Aptitude (QA), Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning (DI&LR), and Verbal and Reading Comprehension (VARC).

CAT 2021: Exam Pattern

Based on the last year’s exam pattern, the expected structure of the CAT 2021 is as follows:


Number of Questions

Duration in minutes

MCQ questions with negative marking

MCQ questions with no negative marking

Verbal Ability & Reading Comprehension



24 to 27

7 to 10

Data Interpretation & Logical Reasoning





Quantitative Ability



23 to 27

7 to 10




70 or 76

22 or 28

CAT 2021: QA Books    

1. Quantum CAT: Written by Sarvesh K Verma, Quantum CAT provides all the necessary study materials for you to crack the Quantitative Aptitude Section of the CAT. Over the years, the book has garnered good reviews for its quality content and practice sets from both, MBA experts and aspirants alike.

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2. The Pearson Guide to Quantitative Aptitude and Data Interpretation: Authored by Nishit Sinha - a veteran in the industry with more than 10 years of experience in the Quantitative Aptitude (QA) - this book is the go-to guide for candidates when it comes to Quant Prep for the CAT. Over several revisions, the Book has been updated with new exercises and practice sets.

3. How to Prepare for Quantitative Aptitude for CAT: This reference book by Arun Sharma is highly recommended as it is easy and simple to understand. The book is a bestseller and a must-read for all CAT aspirants. It offers a systematic and scientific method of discussing important topics related to the QA section of the CAT.

4. Mathematics Formula & Shortcuts eBook: This is an e-book that carries several Mathematical formulas and shortcuts that come in handy while solving quant questions. Using this e-book, you will be able to learn how to quickly apply shortcuts and formulas while solving quant questions. In case time management in the CAT exam is an area that you need to improve, this is just the book you need!

Free CAT Quantitative Aptitude Study Material

CAT 2021: DI&LR Books

1. How to Prepare for Logical Reasoning for the CAT Common Admission Test: Another informative and reliable book authored by Arun Sharma, this book contains examples and also prescribes tried and tested methods to help CAT aspirants prepare for the Logical Reasoning section of CAT with a practical approach.

2. Pearson Guide to Logical Reasoning and Data Interpretation for CAT and Other MBA Entrance Examinations: Pearson Guide is a comprehensive book to prepare for the DI&LR section. Apart from CAT, this book also helps aspirants prepare for the DI and LR sections of other MBA entrance examinations.

3. How to prepare for Data Interpretation for the CAT Common Admission Test: One of the biggest challenges for a CAT aspirant with regard to the DI and LR section is that the DI section doesn’t have a specified syllabus. This Book will help you solve this dilemma by covering an exhaustive list of topics on the subject. The book includes several test papers for the DI section which are directly based on the CAT 2019 exam pattern. This book is a must-buy if you wish to solve the DI section with ease on the D-day.

Free CAT Data Interpretation Study Material

CAT 2021: VARC Books


1. Word Power Made Easy: Authored by Norman Lewis, this book is a must-read for all CAT aspirants. It teaches words and their meaning in a given context which will help you understand the word meanings and remember them for a long. The book is loaded with simple techniques which aim to improve one's vocabulary and word skills. In addition to helping aspirants learn new words and their meanings, the book also explains the correct usage of those words in different situations.

2. Barron’s Pocket Guide to Vocabulary: Another important book that is essential for the CAT exam aspirants is Barron’s pocket guide which will strengthen your ability to solve questions on Reading Comprehension (RC). Generally, there are 2-3 RC passages in the CAT and this book will give a boost to your confidence in solving RC passages in minimal time.

3. How to Prepare for the Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension for the CAT by Arun Sharma and Meenakshi Upadhyay (Tata McGraw-Hill): This workbook will provide you tips based on the previous year’s CAT examination papers. Using these tips, you will be able to greatly reduce the time taken to solve the Reading Comprehension questions.

4. General English eBook for Competitive Exams: This is an interesting eBook that candidates can carry in their mobile as well. This book will enhance your English language skills for the CAT as it offers objective questions and includes chapters on Reading Comprehension, Grammar Usage, Vocabulary, Sentence Rearrangement, and 10 extra practice exercises. Every chapter has more than 60 solved examples along with detailed explanations.

5. Wiley ExamXpert Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension: Capt. AK Kalia's Book on English and Verbal Reasoning is targeted at helping both CAT and other MBA entrance exam aspirants. The book comprises a wide range of topics related to VARC. The Wiley ExamXpert Verbal Ability and Reading Comprehension book contain 12 exhaustive practice exercises and 11 CAT VARC Tests (Based on the latest exam pattern of the CAT). These exercises aim at strengthening the candidates' preparation strategy in the VARC section of the CAT. The book also offers a 16 - week vocabulary building programme. It is a unique concept wherein the readers will come across a multi-pronged approach for learning words in related groups for the multiplier effect. This technique is designed by the author to enable ease of retention for the candidates facing issues in remembering difficult vocabulary words.

Free CAT Verbal Ability Study Material                        

About CAT Exam

The Common Admission Test (CAT) is one of the most coveted MBA entrance exams. It is held annually and is conducted by one of the IIMs on a rotational basis. The CAT exam is a computer-based test that is taken by more than 2 lakh candidates for admission to the premium management institutes in India.

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