• GRE Test Day

Reading for GRE Verbal

Flashcards or Novels, which is better for GRE Verbal?

While it is very interesting to weigh the flashcards against reading novels, it entirely depends on the phase of your preparation, the time you have before GRE, and individual talent to tackle the GRE Verbal section.

Should you read novels to improve your GRE verbal score? Or stick to the flash cards?

How do you decide?

Honestly, crunching flashcards would be better if you have less than 3 months to go for GRE.

Because it has been experienced that a normal student tends to learn twice as many new words with flashcards as compared to that by reading novels.

While it is no hidden fact that novels are a great source to improve your contextual understanding. Not to mention the addition of GRE words with improved reading speed and comprehension ability gradually. It is highly advisable to go for novels only if you have at least 4-5 months to go for GRE.

Here’s a list of books that we would recommend to go for in order to improve your GRE verbal score.

The Best American Essays.

This annual series culls the best writing from hundreds of journals and magazines. With the best essays from various newspapers, magazines, and journals, and a variety of genres available to choose from. This is the best pick from many GRE gurus when it comes to recommended reading for improving your GRE verbal score.

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

A dystopian novel dated back to 1932. It was ranked 5th in the list of 100 best English language novels of the 20th century by the Modern Library in 1999. Not only is this a great GRE read, it’s a great read in general-not to be missed by any human, anywhere.

The House Of Mirth by Edith Wharton

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton tells the story of Lily Bart.A well-born but impoverished woman belonging to New York City’s high society around the turn of the last century. It will be a great read because of her precise, glowing sentences, witty observations of human social interactions, and tragic characters.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE (or any other novel) by Jane Austen

The story charts the emotional development of the protagonist, Elizabeth Bennet, who learns the error of making hasty judgments and comes to appreciate the difference between the superficial and the essential. Also, it will give a great boost to your vocab helping you push your GRE Verbal score.

The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

You’ll find this sci-fi novel and its sequel, Children of God, on every GRE reading list out there. Vocabulary, philosophical inquiry, intellectual speculation, complex compound sentences—these two books have ‘em all.

We will be adding much more to this list. Also, you can help the other students with your suggestions in the comment box.

Stay tuned for more!

Also, The definitive guide on How to ace GRE might be a useful read for you. Do give it a read.