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CliffsNotes AP English Literature and Composition, 3rd Edition (Cliffs AP)
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on August 19, 2004
To be honest, I was never a good writer, I got a 650 on my SAT2 writing test. I didn't take the English AP Language course because I didn't like the teacher too much, so I never had any preparation for it. I didn't do any writing in my English honors class either, but we did read a lot.

I did a few multiple choice questions to familiarize myself with the types of questions they would ask, and when I read the questions and I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of technical terms I never learned like "allegory" and all that stuff, so I went to the back and memorized those terms. I read a lot of the essays in the book so I would know what they were looking for. This book helped a lot on the essay. It teaches you how to structure your essay, write up an introduction, write a pretty sentence, and do some analyzing. I didn't do any of the full-length practice tests, so I never really learned how to time myself. And during the actual test, I never reached the last passage of the multiple choice exam. I was panicking so much, I seriously thought of cancelling my score. But because I actually tried, and paid for it.. I didn't. I ended up getting a 4 on the test, which I'm really proud of.

You have to keep practice writing the essays here, that's where it really counts.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
PROS:

This book offers substantial advice; the most useful piece of which (in my opinion) was "In the essays, be sure to ANSWER THE ESSAY QUESTION, the whole question and nothing but the question." It also walks the reader through several multiple choice passages.

CONS: The literary term list was somewhat basic, and in general, the essay-writing advice seemed confining and old fashioned.

For a more jazzy, student-friendly AP English Lit. Prep book, see the Princeton Review.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on May 15, 2006
When I bought this book, I wondered how a book could help you review for the AP Lit exam, since there are no facts to really cover like in other exams. However, this book is extremely useful for those seeking a high score. It brings you step by step through the process of writing prompts, pointing out important details and giving a plethora of examples. The tips on the multiple choice questions allow you to review all the major terms you need and offers many opportunities to test yourself, with the why behind the answer included. Plus, you will feel better about the test because it is written by a former test writer. This makes it feel like you can trust what he is saying about the test, and I do not remember him being wrong once when it came to the actual exam. In conclusion, buy this book or don't buy one at all.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 24, 2006
This book is really helpful while taking the AP Literature class. It gives some good strategies on how to actually take the test and the practice questions are very similar to what is seen on the test. I definately recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This is a good book. It has an excellent glossary, and the practice tests are very good.
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16 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2001
By far the best English AP preparation book - even better than the first edition. It brings everything up to date and adds good new practice exams. Unfortunately, it costs more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 26, 2014
The AP English Literature exam is one that is difficult to study for. The best thing that you can do to prepare for it is take as many practice tests as possible. The reason I purchased this book was due to the fact that it had many practice exams. I believe it is the preparation I did with this book that led to the passing score I received this July. I recommend this book to all AP English Literature students.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 26, 2014
Although the practice tests were harder than average, they were really helpful in preparation for the exam. Some questions were really out there and would never appear on the exam but the poetry sections were pretty accurate in the level of difficulty.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 7, 2015
some of the tips given are outdated but as like most AP exam books they provide the gist of things. decent buy to cram for exam day haha
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 28, 2015
Book was as described. Able to get it cheaper here than anywhere else.
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