Best LSAT Prep Books

Updated February 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

Shopping guide for best LSAT prep books

Last Updated February 2019

The LSAT has a profound influence on the direction of your education and your law career afterward. A high score can make you appealing to highly competitive programs, while a low score may bar you from the school of your dreams. That’s why preparing for the exam with an LSAT prep book is so crucial.

An LSAT prep book guides you through all of the key concepts you can expect to find on the exam, and it may even give you some advice on how to approach certain types of questions. But it’s important to choose your prep book carefully. If it doesn’t accurately reflect the degree of difficulty of the real exam, it could lull you into a false sense of security.

Here’s a brief guide to walk you through everything you need to think about when choosing an LSAT prep book, and when you’re ready to buy, check out our top picks.

The LSAT consists of four sections: Logical Reasoning, Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games), Reading Comprehension, and a writing sample.

Key considerations

In order to choose the right LSAT prep book for you, you need to think about what you hope to gain from your prep book and how much time you have until the exam.

Your goals

Every student’s needs are different. You might excel in one area of the exam but struggle in another. Or you might need a thorough overview of every section of the exam. Perhaps you like to study with realistic practice questions like those you will find on the exam, or you prefer to read about the key concepts in a textbook. Think about how you learn best and which areas of the exam you need to work on and let this be your guide when choosing an LSAT prep book.

Your timeline

It doesn’t make sense to choose a long, detailed LSAT prep book if you need to take the exam next week. Once you’ve determined your test date, work backward from there and decide how many days and hours you can devote to studying. Choose an LSAT prep book that fits into this timeline. Alternatively, if your schedule isn’t too tight, you can choose an LSAT prep book and let it determine your study plan. You can work through a chapter each day or week until you’ve completed the whole book.

Everything you need, nothing you don’t

The LSAT Trainer was written by an LSAT teacher and test developer who knows the ins and outs of the exam better than almost anyone. It contains over 200 real LSAT questions, plus a plethora of test-taking strategies and drills to help you develop the skill set you need to excel on the exam. Most users are pleased by how much they improved their scores after using this book, and they report that the explanations are easy to understand.

LSAT prep book features

Here are some of the key features you should focus on when choosing an LSAT prep book:

Format

The majority of LSAT prep books are printed books, but if you’d rather not to haul one around, you might want to choose a prep book in a digital format. You can download this onto your e-reader and study on any device when it’s convenient for you. However, a digital format may make taking the practice tests a little more challenging. You’ll need to record your answers on a separate paper rather than in the book itself.

Comprehensive exam overview

Your LSAT prep book should provide an overview of the exam, including how it is structured, time limits, and what concepts you will be tested on in each section of the exam. This information gives you an idea of what to expect on the exam, but you can also find this online, so it shouldn’t be a make-or-break feature.

Concept review

Those interested in a comprehensive review of all the important material that will appear on the LSAT should choose a book that provides a thorough content review. It should have chapters devoted to each of the key topics, and it should give you examples of how these concepts might show up in a test question.

Full-length practice tests

The best LSAT prep books contain full-length copies of previous LSATs, so you can be sure that you’re practicing with the most realistic test questions possible. Full-length practice tests also give you the opportunity to work on your time-management skills, which are just as essential as knowledge of the material.

Question bank

In addition to full-length practice tests, it helps to have a question bank so you can focus on the types of questions that are giving you trouble. Ideally, these questions will be from prior LSATs so you can trust they are of equal difficulty to what you will see on the exam. The book should also have thorough explanations about why a certain answer is right or wrong so you can develop a better understanding of the material.

Test-taking strategies

Many LSAT prep books provide strategies for approaching certain question types so that you can quickly identify incorrect answers and eliminate them. The books may also teach time-management strategies to help you work quickly through the exam. These strategies may not work for everyone, but they’re useful if you struggle with taking tests.

Supplemental materials

Though rare, some LSAT prep books include access to online study materials, including practice questions and video lessons. There may also be forums where you can chat with others who are also studying for the LSAT in case you run into trouble. This is a nice option to have if you like to switch up how you study. You could read from the textbook for a while and then switch over to a video when you need something different.

DID YOU KNOW?

The LSAT is scored on a scale of 120 to 180 points.

LSAT prep book prices

Most LSAT prep books range in price from around $5 to $40. If you want a book that provides a comprehensive review of the full exam, we recommend spending at least $25. Many less-expensive books focus more on practice questions than they do on content review. This can still be useful, but you may not find it quite as helpful if you’re not already familiar with the material you’re going to be tested on.

Great for last-minute prep

If you feel pretty good about your abilities and only need a brief review, The short Fox LSAT primer is a nice option. It’s simple to understand and provides a solid grounding in the common question types you can expect to find on the exam. There are also test questions to give you some hands-on practice with the concepts you’re learning.

Tips

  • Take a full-length practice test before you begin studying for the LSAT. It’s a smart idea to establish a baseline and figure out which areas will require more review.

  • Have a regular study schedule. It will help keep you on track.

  • Study with a buddy. Consider studying with a friend if you have trouble sticking to a study schedule on your own.

  • Take periodic practice tests. This will help you track your progress so you can adjust your study plan accordingly.
EXPERT TIP

It’s best to take the LSAT early so you have time to retake it if you don’t score as high as you’d like the first time.


Staff  | BestReviews
EXPERT TIP

There are no penalties for wrong answers on the LSAT, so don’t leave any questions blank.


Staff  | BestReviews

Other products we considered

If you like the idea of learning from video lessons, the Kaplan LSAT Unlocked prep book is a smart choice. In addition to one full-length practice test and hundreds of real LSAT questions, it includes access to instructor-led online workshops and Kaplan’s LSAT Channel, an online library of video lessons on key topics featured in the LSAT. You’ll also be able to track your progress online using special analytic tools so you can quickly home in on the areas you need to work on. For the most comprehensive review available, try the Manhattan Prep LSAT Strategy Guide Set. This set includes three prep books, one for each section of the LSAT. Each contains a number of realistic practice questions, thorough content review, and test-taking strategies to help you approach each type of question you’re likely to come across on the exam. It also includes online resources like class recordings and online learning labs.

Look into what LSAT score you need to achieve in order to get into the law school of your choice and then keep practicing until you reach your goal.

FAQ

Q. When can I take the LSAT?
A.
There are seven LSAT test dates throughout the year. Choose the one that best fits your schedule and then create your study plan around that.

Q. How can I get the most out of my LSAT prep book?
A.
First, take a practice test to assess your strengths and weaknesses, then use your results as your guide for future studying. Spend less time on the information you already know and more time on the areas you struggle in. Keep testing yourself periodically to check if you’re improving.

Q. What if my LSAT score doesn’t improve?
A.
Most LSAT prep books don’t offer a score improvement guarantee, so you will just have to review the areas in which you did poorly or seek a different LSAT prep book that focuses on the sections where you struggled.

The team that worked on this review
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