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Last Updated: November 19, 2023

Best TOEFL Books

The TOEFL, or Test of English as a Foreign Language, is an exam designed to test one's ability to use and understand English in an academic environment. It was created to address the problem of ensuring the English language proficiency of non-native speakers applying to American universities. Since then, it has become a standard admission requirement for non-native English speakers at many colleges and universities, and occasionally in other institutions like government agencies or businesses.

To get ready for the test, students should buy study materials that have been recommended by their mentors or try to find the best book available that will work for them. For students' perusal, we have put together a list of the best books so they can decide which one to purchase.

List of TOEFL Prep Books

Official Guide to the TOEFL iBT Test, 5th Edition$36.00
  • Questions + Essay Topics
  • Answer Explanations
  • Test Strategies
Barron's TOEFL iBT Test Prep-17th Edition$44.99
  • Practice Questions
  • Practice Tests
  • Supplementary Sections
TOEFL Preparation Book 2022-2023$28.45
  • Test strategies
  • Prep Plans
  • Practice Test Questions
TOEFL iBT Prep Plus 2020-2021 (Kaplan Test Prep)$79.96
  • Practice Test Questions
  • Video Tutorials
  • Tips and Strategies
Cracking the TOEFL iBT Princeton Review 2019$18.06
  • Practice Tests +Audio Content
  • Practice Questions
  • Tips & Strategies

Official Guide to the TOEFL Test with Downloadable Tests, 5th Edition

Cost- $36.00
Publication Date- November 17, 2017
The Official Guide to the TOEFL Test is one of the most reliable TOEFL prep books out there. Including real practice questions and explanations for each section of the test, this book will have one on its way to acing the exam. This study guide clearly outlines what is expected for each of the speaking and writing tasks, and instructs candidates on how to create well-structured answers.

Though there is a 6th Edition of the same book, reviewers claim that it is a repetition of this book in most ways. It contains hundreds of authentic test questions and other essay topics. It is also to be noted that the practice tests included are as close to the official test as possible. The general complaint by people who have purchased the book is that the audio for listening skills is slower than how it is asked for the official exam. So, keep this in mind and prepare for fast-paced audio files in the exam.

This book is ideal for students searching for real-world information. Students can purchase it and study in accordance with the test creators' recommended methods. Ultimately, the key to preparation is knowing how disciplined students are to follow their study schedule and how well they have practiced for the test.


Barron's TOEFL iBT Test Prep-17th Edition

Cost- $44.99
Publication Date- April 7, 2020
This study guide put out by one of the giants in the test preparation industry comes packed with materials to get one ready to ace this challenging exam. Barron's guide is one of the most comprehensive of its caliber on the market.

Though this book was released in 2020, since it contains practice questions more than content, it is still a go-to option for most online prep courses. It was designed to help students succeed on both paper-based and internet-based exams and it includes study guides for both test-taking methods.

Pros- Cons-

TOEFL Preparation Book 2020 and 2021 by Test Prep Books

Cost- $28.45
Publication Date- June 5, 2020
This book is intended for students who are scrambling to finish their exam in the nick of time and are studying for it at the last minute. There are various study plans in this book designed for those who want to get ready in less than a month, two weeks, or even a week. Study planners have the ability to arrange a person's approach to learning and force them to concentrate on subjects they otherwise would not have.

The detailed answers and explanations provided in the book help students rectify one’s mistakes and learn from them. When compared to the official books released by ETS, this book is comparatively cheaper and hence a great choice for those who want to ace the test. Compared to the most recent editions, readers appear to prefer this one.

Pros- Cons-

TOEFL iBT Prep Plus 2020-2021 (Kaplan Test Prep)

Cost- $79.96
Publication Date- September 3, 2019
The most crucial language skills and study techniques are provided by Kaplan's TOEFL iBT Prep Plus 2020"2021, which is a prerequisite for international students wishing to pursue study abroad everywhere in the world. Students can become proficient in reading, writing, speaking, and listening in English so they can confidently take the TOEFL.

Issued in September 2019, the 2020"2021 TOEFL iBT Prep Plus allows students to study while they go. Customers appear to prefer this version of the book even though there are new editions available. Access video lessons, listen to audio, and take mobile-friendly practice exams by logging in from any location.

Pros- Cons-

Cracking the TOEFL iBT - Princeton Review (2019 Edition)

Cost- $18.06
Publication Date- February 9, 2019
This book has been created by the trusted Princeton Review which has been in this business since 1981. The book has been designed in a user-friendly manner where it is not necessary to have a mentor or a tutor to master the basics of the test. It is said that purchasing this book and preparing for less than a month is more than enough to crack the test. That being said since it saves a lot of tuition fees that one might otherwise incur, the book is an investment in itself.

Called a good strategy book by reviewers, Cracking the TOEFL iBT, by Princeton Review, is an excellent study guide. The newest edition comes with a full-length simulated iBT TOEFL exam and accompanying audio sections. Readers appear to prefer these editions even though there are newer versions of this book available.

Some of the positive features of this book are excellent writing strategies and drills, and fairly challenging speaking and listening strategies and drills, though they are limited in number. One weakness might be that the reading sample questions are reported to be easier than the questions on the actual exam.

Pros- Cons-

Some Other Trusted Books from Years Past

Nova's - Speaking and Writing Strategies for the TOEFL iBT (2nd Edition)

Cost- $20.49

Are you a test-taker who is less confident in your writing and speaking skills than listening and reading skills? Have you been trying to find a prep book that focuses on the sections you need rather than books that make you pay for things you don’t require? Then this is the book for you. This book contains key strategies that focus on improving your writing and speaking scores.

According to this book, argument mapping is the strategy that one has to learn and use to ace these sections in the test. So, they try to teach you rhetorical strategies and means of opinion development. They provide step-by-step basic and advanced responses for all tasks.

Along with these strategies, they focus on how you can revise your responses in certain ways that can maximize scoring. The book, more than teaching you about the language, teaches you about the exam and its grading pattern. This smart way of learning is best for those who are well-versed in the language but are not confident in their ability to organize and articulate their thoughts well. If you are such a person, this book is a must-buy.


Mometrix-TOEFL Preparation Book 2021-2022

Cost- $24.99

This book is considered to be one of the better prep books for TOEFL with extensive content reviews for all sections and enough practice questions to keep one up-to-date with the test at all times. It focuses mainly on the practice questions and answers since these are the two things that candidates look for in a prep book. Candidates will also be able to use the online videos whose links have been provided in the book for learning content from online instructors. The book has only 122 pages that have been crammed with all the content one might require for clearing the examination.


TOEFL Preparation Book 2020 and 2021 by Test Prep Books

Cost- $20.72

Are you preparing for TOEFL at the last minute? Do you have just one week or one month ahead of you until the exam date? Then this book is for you. This book has different study plans made for people who want to prepare in 1 week, 2 weeks, or even under a month. The study planners can organize one’s method of study and make them focus on things they probably wouldn't have focused on by themselves.

The detailed answers and explanations provided in the book help you rectify one’s mistakes and learn from them. When compared to the official books released by ETS, this book is comparatively cheaper and hence a great choice for those who want to ace the test.


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