Best IAS Books for Prelims and Mains Exam

Best IAS Books for Prelims and Mains Exam

A complete list of IAS Books needed for Civil Services Prelims and Mains exam preparation – Best IAS Books for Prelims and Mains

Best IAS Books for prelims and mains

Dear Aspirants,

IAS, One of the most competitive exams in the country does need the reference of only the best Best Books available. While aspirants are leaving no stone unturned in order to clear IAS Prelims and Mains exam, we have brought a list of Best IAS Books for Prelims and Mains to strengthen your examination techniques and strategies.

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⇒Best IAS Books for Prelims:

Below mentioned books will help you prepare for IAS Prelims examination. The contents in these books will also be useful during the preparation of IAS Mains exam.

Subject Books
  • History of Modern India by Bipan Chandra
  • India’s Struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra
  • India’s Ancient Past by R.S. Sharma
  • History of Medieval India by Satish Chandra
  • The wonder that was India by A.L. Bhasham
  • Indian Art and Culture by Nitin Singhania
  • Geography of India by Majid Husain
  • Oxford School Atlas by Oxford Publishers
  • Certificate Physical and Human Geography by Goh Cheng Leong


  • Indian Polity for Civil Services Examination by M. Laxmikanth
  • Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh
  • Economic Survey
Science and Technology
  • Science and Technology in India by MHE
  • Environmental Studies: From Crisis to Cure by Rajagopalan
  • Environment for Civil Services prelims and Mains by Khuller
Current Affairs
  • India Year Book
  • Manorama Yearbook


Paper 2 (CSAT )
  • CSAT Paper 2 Manual by MHE
  • CSAT II by Arihant
Paper 2, Analytical Reasoning (CSAT )
  • Analytical Reasoning by M.K. Pandey
CSAT (Paper 2, Reasoning)
  • Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning by R.S Aggarwal

⇒Best IAS Books for Mains:

IAS Mains examination requires an in-depth knowledge of the subject. Although the contents of IAS Prelims books will remain useful, You must prepare for IAS Mains examination using the IAS Books mentioned below.

Subject Books
Essay Paper
  • Selected Contemporary Essays by Saumitra Mohan
  • Essays for Civil Services by Pulkit Khare
History (GS-1)
  • India after Gandhi by Ramachandra Guha
World History (GS-1)
  • Norman Lowe OR History of Modern World by Jain and Mathur
Indian Society (GS-1)
  • Social Problems in India by Ram Ahuja
General Studies (Paper-2)
  • IAS Mains General Studies Paper 2 by Arihant Manual
Governance (GS-2)
  • Governance in India for CSE
Foreign Policy (GS-2)
  • Pax India by Shashi Tharoor
  • India and the World by Surendra Kumar
GS-3, Manual
  • IAS General Studies, GS-3 by Arihant Manual
Internal Security (GS-3)
  • India’s National Security: A Reader
  • Challenges to Internal Security of India
Ethics, (GS-4)
  • Lexicon for Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude
  • IAS Mains General Studies by Arihant Manual
  • Additionally, you can refer to NCERT textbooks for various primary topics.
  • Read Newspaper on regular basis to be updated with current affairs.
  • Most importantly, IAS examination demands a regular and persistent effort and if you do that, off-course, you can do it.

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Hope this article on Best IAS Books will help you pick the best possible books for your exam preparation. If you have any Query or suggestion, Do write us in the comments below.


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