Recommended Books For UPSC Mains Preparation

If there is one thing that can make the cumbersome process of UPSC exam preparation simple for Civil Services aspirants, it is the availability of the best study material.

Having the right set of books at the right time for exam preparation can do wonders for aspirants. Especially the books for UPSC Mains Preparation!

It is normal to get overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the best books for the Mains preparation. Many aspirants often buy literally every book available in the market and end up getting confused and stressed.

However, this won’t happen to you. To streamline your Mains preparation and make it more convenient for you, we have compiled a list of books recommended by the UPSC toppers that will take your exam preparation to another level. Let’s have a look at them.

Best Books for UPSC Mains Preparation

Recommended Books for Paper-II General Studies I- Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society.  

  • India’s Struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra
  • India After Independence (1947-2000) by Bipan Chandra
  • From Plassey To Partition And After by Sekhar Bandyopadhyay
  • The Story of Civilization, Part 2 by Arjun Dev, NCERT
  • Mastering Modern World History by Class XII (Old NCERT Book)
  • Introduction to Indian Art for Class XI (NCERT)
  • Geography of India – Majid Hussain
  • World Geography- Majid Hussain
  • Oxford Atlas
  • Central Physical and Human Geography by GC Leong
  • Indian Geography by D.R Khullar
  • Geography NCERTs (Class XI  and XII) 
  • XI Standard NCERT on Indian Society (Chapters on Unity & Diversity and Population Issues)
  • XII Standard NCERT (Chapters on Communalism, Secularism and Urban Issues such as Poverty, Housing, etc.)

Recommended Books for Paper-III General Studies II- Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International Relations.

  • Constitution of India at Work (Class XI) NCERT Publication
  • Indian Polity by Laxmikanth
  • Governance in India Paperback by M. Laxmikanth
  • From Government to Governance by Kuldeep Mathur
  • Ethics in Governance, ARC Report
  • Citizen-Centric Administration (Chapters 2, 5, 6, 7 & 8 only and box items in the report)
  • Human Development Report & World Development Report
  • Panchayati Raj in India by Kuldeep Mathur
  • International Relations by Pavneet Singh

Recommended Books for Paper-IV General Studies III- Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management .

  • Indian Economic Development XI Standard NCERT
  • Indian Economy by Sanjiv Verma 
  • Introductory Macroeconomics XII Standard NCERT (Ignore all diagrams & mathematical formulas)
  • Economics Dictionary published by Collins & Penguin
  • The Hindu or Indian Express Newspaper
  • Certificate Physical & Human Geography by Goh Cheng Leong (Second Half of the Book)
  • XII Standard NCERT Book on Biology (Chapters pertaining to Ecology)
  • Indian Year Book (Chapters on Environment)
  • Chapter on Climate Change from Economic Survey
  • India’s Security in a Turbulent World by Jasjit Singh, published by National Book Trust of India
  • Class VIII, IX, X Standard NCERT books on Biology
  • Environment and Disaster Management – Tata McGraw Hill

Recommended Books for Paper-V General Studies IV- Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude.

  • Ethics in Governance, ARC Report
  • Lexicon by Chronicle Publications
  • The Books on Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude published by Access Publication
  • Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Subba Rao and P.N. Roy Chaudary

Also read: How to Prepare for UPSC Mains 2021?

To make the most of these books and for better practice, it is strongly recommended to solve previous year’s question papers and attempt Mock Tests on a regular basis. 

Now when you are aware of the recommended books for UPSC Mains, kickstart your UPSC exam preparation with PrepLadder. It is an excellent source of quality and reliable learning material for Civil Service aspirants and has everything you need to ace the Civil Services Exam on one single platform. 

This includes concise, effective and well-planned video lectures by our Dream Team for UPSC, a well-structured and high yield QBank, highly competitive PrepTests based on real exam pattern, and Previous Year Papers in the form of tests.

The best part about the Dream Team is that you can carry it wherever you go and get anytime & anywhere access to well-researched study material. 

Keep following our articles and our Telegram Channel to apprise yourself with the latest information about the exam.

Own Your Dream 

Raminder Singh

Raminder is a Content Writer at PrepLadder. He is working to provide students with informative articles and the latest updates about UPSC and GATE exams.