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Barron's GRE Book Review

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Barron's GRE Book Review [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2015, 11:23
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A Good starter’s book but not the best one!

We at GRE Prep Club have access to a vast amount of resources available for GRE Prep and here is our feedback on Barron’s’ GRE.


# Good Value for Money: The combined package, i.e. the book + free online GRE Course, is a very good tool to have for a beginner.

# Its greatest merit lies in its Chapters Reviews. The chapters are covered in great detail and are bolstered with a large number of solved examples. The text is quite extensive and exhaustive.

# The answers to the practice questions, in the book, are very detailed and useful. If trivial errors are the bane of your preparation then this book is quite a nifty tool for you.

# Stress on Vocabulary: There is a significant amount of stress on vocabulary building. This is the greatest edge that it has over its competition.


# Difficulty level of questions, specifically in the Quantitative section, could have been better. The practice test set questions are not at par with the Questions by ETS or Manhattan.

# Topics Probability and Statistics are poorly covered! This is a major challenge with the book. These topics have a significant presence in the GRE test however they have been neglected in the book.

# Lack of tests. There are two tests (paper) in the book and a diagnostic test online. However most of other books offer more number of tests and also of better quality.

# Testing analysis tools leave much to be desired for! When compared to the test given by Princeton or Manhattan or Kaplan the test analysis tool falls short.

# Very average AWA section: The coverage of AWA section is not at par with any other top books available in the Market!

Overall it is a balanced book and decent value for money. However, it is not sufficient by itself, if the user wants to score more than 315 points especially not for AWA section. If you are looking to score higher on the GRE you must consider other books. It is highly advisable that you look into ETS GRE as they have actual GRE Questions.

~~~ Some other Frequently asked Questions: ~~~

~~~What are some of the other study options that I have?~~~

Some students, in the past, have bypassed Barron’s completely and started more specialized books such as the ETS or Manhattan GRE. For example, Manhattan GRE Set of eight strategy guides come with 8 books that target specific math and verbal areas. You would have a much better shot at scoring 315+ using this (not guaranteed), however they require 2-3 months to complete. ETS has a similar collection of 3 books (general + quantitative + verbal). They also have four tests on CD rom enclosed along with the package.

~~~What is a good study plan using Barron’s GRE?~~~

Since it is a good book for beginner’s, I would recommend that you could start with Barron and finish it within a month, then evaluate which are your areas of strength/ weakness. Based on your analysis you can invest in a book by Manhattan/ ETS to bolster your weaknesses. If probability and Statistics is not your strong suite you will need to refer to another book.

~~~Will this get me to 315+?~~~

This book alone, probably, won’t get you to 315+ score; but for people out of college it would refresh the math and verbal fundamentals. You should seriously consider investing in ETS as they provide you with questions that have appeared in GRE before.

~~~Other Books I should know about?~~~

From Manhattan:

# The Algebra GRE Strategy Guide

# The Fractions, Decimals, & Percents GRE Strategy Guide

# The Geometry GRE Strategy Guide

# The Number Properties GRE Strategy Guide

# The Word Problems GRE Strategy Guide

# The Quantitative Comparisons & Data Interpretation GRE Strategy Guide

# The Reading Comprehension & Essays GRE Strategy Guide

# The Text Completion & Sentence Equivalence GRE Strategy Guide

From ETS:

# The Official Guide to the GRE Revised General Test with CD-ROM, 2nd Edition

# Official GRE Verbal Reasoning Practice Questions

# Official GRE Quantitative Reasoning Practice Questions

Best of luck with your test prep.

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Re: Barron's GRE Book Review [#permalink] New post 01 Jul 2015, 23:33
Agree with the difficulty part, it's definitely on the easier side especially comparing to Magoosh.
Re: Barron's GRE Book Review   [#permalink] 01 Jul 2015, 23:33
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