Books for UPSC Civil Services 2019

Books for UPSC Civil Services 2019 - Competitive exams like UPSC Civil Services assess the overall intellectual traits of candidates. Questions in the exam are asked from various subjects to test the candidate’s basic understanding of all relevant issues, ability to analyse the conflicting socio-economic goals, objectives and demands. Aspirants can develop their understanding on different topics by reading good books. However, it is icing on cake if one gets to prepare from the best books. Thus, for the convienence of aspiring candidates, Careers 360 has prepared a list of books for UPSC Civil Services 2019 separately for preliminary, mains and Interview. The easiest and simplest way to choose the books for UPSC Civil Services is to follow the suggestions given by experts and toppers.

Latest: Download here UPSC Civil Services Answer Key 2019 for Prelims by Coaching Institutes

Books for UPSC Civil Services

The books for UPSC Civil Services have been provided separately for preliminary, mains and interview. Civil Services aspirants can check the best books for UPSC Civil Services.

Books for UPSC Civil Services 2019 Prelims Exam

The Preliminary Examination of UPSC Civil Services consists of two papers of objective type. Each paper as per UPSC Civil Services exam pattern carries 200 marks. Marks obtained by candidates in preliminary exam are not considered for final merit list. Candidates can check below the books for Civil Services Prelims exam for General Studies Paper I and II.

Best Books for UPSC Civil Services Prelims – General Studies Paper I

The General Studies paper I of IAS prelims carries questions from Current events of national and international importance, history of India and Indian National Movement, Indian Polity and Governance, General Science etc.


Books for UPSC Civil Services 2019

History of India and Indian National Movement

Spectrum’s A Brief History of Modern India, by Rajiv Ahir

India’s Ancient Past, by R.S. Sharma

A history of Medieval India, by Chandra Satish

Indian Art and Culture, by Nitin Singhania

NCERT Class 6th to 12th

Indian Polity and Governance - Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc

Indian Polity, by Laxmikanth

Introduction to Constitution of India, by Durga Das Basu

Indian and World Geography - Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World

Certificate Physical & Human Geography, by Goh Cheng Leong

Geography of India, by Majid Hussain

Oxford School Atlas

NCERT Class 6th to 12th

Economic and Social Development - Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc

Indian Economy- Ramesh Singh

Economic Survey of India, by Ministry of Finance

The Lexicon for Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Niraj Kumar

NCERT Class 9th to 12th

Current events of national and international importance

Manorama Yearbook

Yojana Magazine

Newspapers: Hindu or Indian Express

General issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change-that do not require subject specialization General Science

NCERT Biology Class 12th

Best Books to Prepare for UPSC Civil Services Prelims – General Studies Paper II

Question in General Studies Paper II are asked from Comprehension, Interpersonal skills including communication skills, Logical reasoning and analytical ability, Decision making and problem solving, General mental ability, Basic numeracy etc. This paper is qualifying in nature. To qualify the exam, candidates will have to score 33%. Listed below are topic-wise books for UPSC Civil Services General Studies Paper II.


Books for UPSC Civil Services Prelims General Studies

English Comprehension

Yojana, Kurukshetra, Frontline and the newspapers like Indian Express, The Hindu

Logical Reasoning and Analytical Ability

Analytical Reasoning – MK Pandey

Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning– RS.Aggarwal

Books for UPSC Civil Services 2019 Mains Exam

The mains exam of UPSC Civil Services consists of 9 papers of conventional essay type. Two papers (Paper-A: Indian Language and Paper B English) are qualifying in nature. Marks obtained in Paper I to VII will be for determining the merit of candidates. Total marks allotted for UPSC Civil Services mains exam are 1750. The paper-wise list of books for UPSC Civil Services mains exam is given below.

Recommended books for Compulsory Subjects


Books for UPSC Civil Services mains exam

General Studies Paper I (Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the world and Science)

  • Geography – NCERT 11th Class, Geophysical Phenomenon by Dr Khullar, PMF IAS Notes for Geography or GC Leong

  • History – Spectrum, Independence – Spectrum (Integration of Princely States), Bipin Chandra, NCERT 12th Class Political Science

  • World History – NCERT of 9th and 10th Class, Vision Notes

  • Sociology – NCERT of Sociology and Newspaper

  • Culture – Ancient Medieval History

General Studies Paper II (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice, and International Relations)

  • Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice, and International Relations – Laxmikant, Representation of People Act, Welfare Schemes along with Current Affairs compilation

  • Current Affairs – Newspaper, current affairs compilation and other important sources mentioned above in the article

General Studies Paper III (Technology, Economic Development, Bio-diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management)

  • Economics, Inclusive Growth, Budget – Economic Survey, Budget Highlight

  • For Science and Tech refer to Current Affairs

  • Environment – NCERT books class 9, 10, 11 and 12

  • Disaster Management – Dr Khullar

  • Yojana, Kurukshetra, Science Reporter Magazine

General Studies IV (Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude)

  • Emotional Intelligence, Probity of Governance, attitude, ethics – Lexicon

  • Learn Real Life Examples by Subba Rao

UPSC Civil Services books for Optional Subjects

Optional Subjects



Sociology Themes and Perspectives – Michael Haralambos, Martin Holborn

Sociology Themes and Perspectives – Michael Haralambos, Martin Holborn

Society In India: Concepts, Theories And Recent Trends – Ram Ahuja

Social Problems In India – Ram Ahuja

Sociology – Anthony Giddens

Sociological Theory – George Ritzer

Oxford Dictionary Of Sociology

Modernization Of Indian Tradition – Yogendra Singh

Sociological Thought – Francis Abraham, John Henry Morgan

Social Change In Modern India – M. N. SRINIVAS

Caste Its Twentieth Century Avatar – M. N. SRINIVAS

Persistence and Change in Tribal India – M.V. Rao

Social Background of Indian Nationalism – A. R. Desai

Public Administration

Public Administration – Laxmikanth

New Horizons Of Public Administration – Mohit Bhattacharya

Administrative Thinkers – D. Ravindra Prasad

Contemporary Debates in Public Administration – Dhameja Alka

Indian Administration – Maheswari

Introduction to the constitution of India – D.D.Basu

Public Administration: Concepts And Theories – Rumki Basu

A Dictionary of Public Administration – Maheswari

Indian Administration – Pankaj Singh

Public Administration : Theory And Practice

Governance in India for UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Examination – Laxmikanth

Administrative Theories And Management Thought – Sapru


A New Look at Modern Indian History From 1707 to the Modern Times

Modern India, 1885-1947

History of Medieval India

The Penguin History Of Early India: From The Origins To AD 1300

History Of Modern India

India’s Ancient Past

Modern Indian History

Mastering Modern World History

Age of Revolution 1789-1848

Age of Capital 1848-1875

Age of Empire 1875-1914


Physical Geography By Savinder Singh

Physical Geography By Stahler

Physical Geography Made Simple Books

Geography Through Maps by K. Siddhartha

Geomorphology by Savindra Singh

Climatology by D. S. Lal

Atmosphere, Weather and Climate – K.Siddhartha

India – A comprehensive Geography

Regional Planning in India – Chand and Puri

Oxford School Atlas

Environmental Geography

Indian Economy

Human Geography By Majid Hussain

Urbanization and Urban Systems in India


Ahuja – Advanced microeconomics theory– macro theories of distribution, welfare etc.

Dwivedi (for money multiplier).

Economics of Environment – Subhashini Muthukrishnan

Indian Economy – Datt and Sundaram

Indian Economy – Ramesh Singh

Statistical Methods – S P Gupta

Political Science

An introduction to the constitution by DD Basu

India’s foreign policy – V P Dutt

International organisations by spectrumGlobal politics by Andrew Heywood

Books to prepare for UPSC Civil Services 2019 Interview

The Interview of UPSC Civil Services is conducted for qualified candidates of mains exam to assess candidates capability for a career in public service. The test carries 275 marks. To prepare for Interview, candidates should read The Hindu and Indian Expressand go through the details they have entered in Detailed Application Form (DAF).

Recommended books for Interview

Civil Services Interview: How to Excel by Madhukar Bhagat

Interviews The Last Basic Tips On facing Civil Services Personality Test by Smarak Swain

To ace UPSC Civil Services exam, it is essential to stay updated on current events. It is important to read as many reference books available for different subjects. Check the books to prepare for UPSC Civil Services 2019 suggested by experts and toppers.

More like UPSC Civil Services Exam

Questions related to UPSC Civil Services Exam

Showing 965 out of 965 Questions

which branch should i choose after 12 ?? i am pcm student and i want to become an IAS officer

Payal 19th Oct, 2019

Hii aspirants

let me clear your doubt. To be an ias officer you have to crack cse exam conducted by upsc. And the basic eligibility criteria for this exam is that you must have bachelor degree in any subject so you can go for any subject or any branch according to your interest .

I hope my answer will help you out

Good luck


which is best or degree for ias

Vishwaksen Gouda Student Expert 19th Oct, 2019

Hello Durga, and both are the degree qualifications and both are good.

You can do anything as your wish but remember every year only few members about 100 candidates will be selected as IAS  officers and if you are really work hard for that strongly determined to become IAS .the you can go with degree ( for better time preparing

With you can also prepare and also you can have advantage of getting in some other fields also

Choice is yours

All the best


how to become a Ias Officer? please give me full details

Payal 16th Oct, 2019

Hii aspirants

To be an IAS offocer you have to crack cse exam conducted by upsc. You have to crack all the prelims, mains and then interview.

The minimum eligibility criteria to give this exam is that you should  have complete your bachelor degree.  And the age limit is that a candidate should be a minimum of 21 years and maximum 32 years old as on August 01, 2019 but there is relaxation of 5 years for sc, st and 3 years relaxation for obc. For General Candidates there is maximum  6 attempts (Up to 32 Years) for this exam, for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Candidates there is  no Limits and for Other Backward Classes  there is 9 attempts ,for Physically handicapped- 9 attempts.

I hope my answer will help you out

Good luck


how to start upsc Ias/pcs praparation

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 15th Oct, 2019


UPSC exam consists of three level-




Preliminary numbers are not added in the final list, you just need to score the required cut offs against your category.It mainly consists of GS Paper-I and CSAT. Both consists of 200 marks, MCQs based.

Mains is more of a subjective type, one needs to write answer for Four General Studies Paper,Two Optionals, One Essay, two language paper, there are total nine papers here. 250 marks for each paper, total is 1750

You can start your preparation with gradual steps as mentioned below-

Be well acquainted with UPSC Syllabus, learn it by heart, that's the most crucial step to crack this exam, to know what to read and what to skip. In addition to this, never ever make a differentiation between prelims and mains, what I mean is do not prepare separately for each, because nowadays what's happening is even in prelims, UPSC frame questions based on Mains syllabus, So, the first towards preparation shall be a combined preparation for both.

Read any newspaper like The Hindu, or Indian Express on a regular basis to be updated as well as gaining knowledge which shall be highly useful to you in future exam preparation part.

Start with basics, for each subject, you can do with NCERTs for this.

As you progress, move on to other relevant books, keep your resources minimum like Polity by Laxmikanth, History of Modern India by Bipin Chandra etc.

Start practicing answer writing in advance, even in a little way, writing mains is a huge task for nine paper, it requires immense practice along with knowledge.

Practice  previous year question paper which you can get from the site of UPSC,in addition mock papers, and test series which you can get it from any of the sites extensively dedicated to UPSC, , it's highly important to evaluate your performance while doing so.

Prelims is mcq based, but still it requires knowledge coupled with speed, and for mains, as I already mentioned the importance of answer writing.

State level PSCs too follow the similar pattern as that of UPSC. You can extensively use the information I've provided in regards to PSCs as well.


what is the procedure for becoming an ias officer

Aditya kumar Student Expert 15th Oct, 2019

Hello there!


The process of becoming an IAS officer  is pretty easy. First of all you need to complete your graduation and the appear for the exam called UPSC i.e. Union Public Service Commission . The UPSC CSE consists of 3 stages Prelims, Mains, and Interview. And if you manage to clear all these three rounds and manage to get a top rank at least less than 90 or 100 then you will become an IAS officer. Getting into Indian Administrative Service (IAS) is not easy considering the competition involved, but not impossible for a candidate with right attitude and approach. So , just work hard , you will definitely become an IAS officer.


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