Best SAT Prep Books for 2021

May 21, 2021

Performing well on the SAT generally needs substantial studying, commitment, and practice. But the real question arises when you have to choose from so many SAT prep books.  

There are so many books, and how to tell the difference between which are good and which are bad. Well, no need to panic; after doing a thorough analysis, our team has evaluated the best SAT prep books for you.

For your further convenience, we have divided the books into four categories;

  • Best General SAT Prep Book
  • Best SAT Prep Book for Instruction, Strategy, and Practice Questions
  • Best Book for SAT Math
  • Best Book for SAT Reading and Writing

What can you achieve by using an SAT prep book?

If you wish to achieve your best score across all SAT sections of SAT, you can go for exam prep books to help you plan your studies and learn the strategies to maximize your scores.

To find the right SAT prep book for you, think about the areas you'd like to improve in — some books focus on specific exam sections.

You're probably wondering why AP Guru, known for its online SAT prep program, is going old school and recommending an SAT book list.

Why is AP Guru Recommending SAT prep books?

We are SAT experts, all of our tutors have demonstrated an exceptional ability to convey material in a fun, customize, and results-driven way. 

AP Guru's mission is to ensure our students get the best prep and counseling to help them succeed. Our team is devoted to providing you with the foremost resources to achieve your academic and personal goals.

You can learn if you are self-inspired and prefer using SAT books in your prep, then it is a great way to study content, exercise strategies, and try out sample questions.

All the SAT prep books suggested below have strengths and weaknesses. Experts published many books without thorough research, while others, sadly, do not offer the same level of value and quality as previous versions.

AP Guru has successfully combined the best parts of the books mentioned below into its online prep program while guiding you to get the very prep and counseling. We help you plan out your study schedule, monitor your progress, and sharpen the specific skills you need most to increase your scores.

SAT prep books help you modify your study plan according to your particular needs, but with AP Guru, we make all the effort. Plus, we guide you in your study and give you a much more cost-effective deal than buying all these books!

We are not promoting or benefiting financially from these SAT prep book recommendations. You can trust that our advice is unbiased and based on our students' real experiences with these SAT preparation books.

Committed to saving your time and efforts, our teachers have spent hundreds of hours evaluating the best SAT prep books for 2021. Let us check out our list of SAT books:

Best General SAT Prep Book

College Board's Official SAT Study Guide, 2021 Edition

Collegeboard SAT

Cost: $15 on Amazon

Often considered the bible of SAT prep book, this is one of the best books in the market. You can also find pretty much all of this material online for free. Many students and teachers were upset to buy The Official Study Guide because it offered its practice tests online. 

The SAT prep book delivers an accurate description of the kind of question you can expect on SAT day. It has eight full-length exercises in the new SAT exam format. Besides SAT practices, this book guides you with the test prep structure and techniques to answer SAT reading and writing and SAT Math questions separately.


  • Developed and written by the creators of the SAT exam
  • Available free online from the College Board's website
  • 8 full-length exercises in the new SAT format
  • Regularly updated with each test revision


  • There is no study material per chapter

Barron's SAT (29th Edition)

Barron's SAT Guide

Cost: $22 on Amazon

This SAT Premium Study Guide is an introductory book that gives you a short description of each of the general core concepts. 

Barron's study book offers present-day reviews, learning advice and examination tips, and some well specialist views on SAT essays. It also gives various strategies for approaching mathematics questions.

Apart from quantitative strategies, this book also provides valuable material for SAT reading and writing section. The verbal section includes a list of word definitions instead of reliable techniques.


  • ‍‍Have full-length SAT mock examination
  • Free access to Barron's online SAT prep course
  • It also includes an extra set of SAT practice questions and handy insights for the SAT    writing and reading section


  • No proper updates on most of the math questions
  • Some question types are confusing and have complicated words that are difficult for everyone to understand
  • The lower level of difficulty level than the actual SAT

Best SAT Prep Book for Instruction, Strategy, and Practice Questions

SAT Prep Black Book: The Most Effective SAT Strategies Ever Published ByMike Barrett and Patrick Barrett

SAT Prep Black Book

Cost: $24-$28 on Amazon

We highly suggest SAT Prep Black Book for its profound strategies and expert test guidance. The Writer of SAT Black Book is Mike Barrett, who has put in many efforts and thoroughly understood the test.

The Black Book has more than 600+detailed SAT questions from the College Board so that you can take the test in the best possible way. One of the great things about this SAT prep book is, it presents how each question works and how you can answer it in the least amount of time.

The SAT Black Book is beneficial as supplemental study material during your SAT review for SAT Reading and Math.


  • An excellent book to learn about the format, structure, and tricks of the SAT
  • According to the students' target scorebook is customized
  • Provides complete explanations of practice test answers


  • It does not include any of its own SAT practice questions
  • Not practical for reviewing concepts and exam topics on a wide scale

Best Book for SAT Math

500 New SAT Math Problems by Dr. Steve Warner

500 New SAT Math Problems

Cost: About $40 on Amazon

Cost: About $40 on Amazon

This book is the latest in SAT Math preparation. Dr. Steve Warner explains each area on the test: Passport to Advanced Math, Heart of Algebra, Data Analysis, Problem Solving, Geometry, and Complex Numbers.

Answer descriptions are easy to understand and clear for everyone; this SAT Math book uses some unique approaches you can take while tackling a problem.


  • Dr. Warner provides complete and explicit content instruction
  • According to their difficulty, SAT math concepts are arranged
  • Sensibly crafted each lesson to help you quickly understand


  • Content isn't broken down into smaller and more specific subtopic

Best Book for SAT Reading and Writing

The Critical Reader: The Complete Guide to SAT Reading, 3rd Edition

The Critical Reader SAT Reading

Cost: $33 on Amazon

The Critical Reader SAT prep book focuses on boosting your reading skills. The Reading comprehension questions are also well-organized and straightforward written so you can identify important information rapidly. This SAT book helps you locate that one univocal correct answer on reading comprehension questions. 

This book discusses question types to understand better what kinds of questions appear on Reading, interpretation of detail, and vocabulary in context. It lays out handy strategies for approaching data interpretation questions, where you have to read graphs and tables. 


  • Provides valuable strategies to answer question
  • Passages in the book are the same as the SAT
  • Locate essential information quickly
  • Offers ideas for how to use context clues to discover the meanings of words and phrases.


  • Inadequate design and layout
  • No full practice tests

5 Important Tips When Buying an SAT Prep Book

  • Conduct your research
  • Take advice from previous test-takers
  • Know your strengths and weaknesses to focus more on your weak areas
  • Choose updated content versions.
  • Learn and seek advice from teachers and tutor

Conclusion: Understand Your Best SAT prep Options

The SAT has enormous importance in students' life. Performing well in English and Math classes does not guarantee you a high SAT Reading or Math score. Prep is a crucial component of getting a high score for many students.

AP Guru's online SAT program was created to not waste your time on many different SAT prep material you already know, and you get the most of your prep time.

Our team of experts maintains the content review's quality, uses simple strategies, and SAT practice questions while presenting a fun, personalized, and result-oriented way.