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on December 30, 2015
It is fine, nothing amazing, but I found for a guidebook that is supposed to showcase the most difficult questions you will encounter that the questions are actually quite easy. The GMAC Official Guide provided more explanation/review, as well as more difficult questions. Most troubling, however, is that the guidebook is riddled with errors. One problem-solving question, for example, shows you two ways to solve a problem and gives two different answers as the correct choice. Other answer explanations seems to ignore the basic set-up of the problem (ie, saying x and y must be equal and then suggesting that you make x=2 and y=3 to solve). I have found at least one mistake in every section so far, which I find unacceptable​.

It covers a lot of ground and I appreciate that it highlights common categories and mistakes, but its hard to trust the explanations and the format of 2-4 questions followed by explanation and answers followed by more questions makes it hard to get into the test-taking mode of needing to answer many questions in a row.
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on May 2, 2016
The math section of this book is really quite good. I think I improved as a result of using this book. In particular, the math questions near the end are much harder than those up front. In my opinion the questions aren't 800 level questions but more of challenging ones that are good to learn from. The verbal section is quite good as well. The best part of this book is that the explanations are right after each question so don't have to flip thirty something pages to see the solution and explanation unlike in other books.
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on April 7, 2014
I am not blasting this book - I am giving you a rating based on the expectation that the description of this book sets. It does not live up and you are bound to be disappointed. However, it is actually a valuable book but you need to be aware of what you are buying and probably how to use it best when you buy it:

As a pure guidebook - 1 star
As a question collection - 4 stars

What You Will Find Inside:
28 Critical reasoning questions
31 Reading comprehension questions
110 Sentence correction questions
107 Problem solving questions (only 7 of which cover combinations and probability)
37 Data Sufficiency questions
100 + questions in the online question bank

***** CONS *****
* No review of math principles or grammar rules. This book assumes that you have gone through the Kaplan's main GMAT book. If you need help with basics look into getting the Math or Verbal Workbooks before getting this one.
* Illogical structure. Instead of the typical approach of providing a rule and then questions to practice that rule on, this book just lists questions in each of the sections. All of the valuable information and tips are scattered around the explanations section. The book assumes you will read/review explanations for every question. In defense, the main point is often emphasized, so they are not too hard to find.
* Question difficulty. Fewer than 50 people per year score 800 on the GMAT, and most of the lucky guys get past 700. To appeal to a broad audience, Kaplan designed this book at a 650/700-level
* Math section is fairly easy and lacks meaningful practice in advanced subjects such as probability, combinations, or coordinate geometry, statistics. If these are your weak areas, you should look elsewhere
* No Integrated Reasoning

***** PROS *****
* The book does what it was supposed to do - provide advanced selection of questions, giving the necessary practice with relevant questions. Though Kaplan's questions are not one-for-one official GMAT questions, I found them fairly close overall. I also liked the explanations - they were very detailed
* Good verbal section with valuable RC practice; huge selection of SC's
* Good quality publishing and paper; good layout
* Price - I thought it was worth every penny :)

Bottom Line: This is not a guidebook or a book to start with - if you need to get better in a certain question type, then get it but don't expect it to be sufficient to give you the background often needed to score 700+.

[+++] Here is the list of the hardest questions in the book (if this is all you are looking for).
CR tough questions:
Chapter 2: Prob # 3, 7
Chapter 3: #9,10,11
Chapter 4: #1,2,4,7,9,10,13,16,20,21,27
RC tough questions:
Chapter5: Has no questions
Chapter6: Passage 1: #1, #4, Passage 2: #1, #3, Passage 3: #4, Passage 4: #3
Chapter7: Passage 1: #2, Passage 2:None, Passage 3: #3, #4, Passage 4: #1, #2.
Sentence Correction
Chapter 8- no questions
Chapter 9: Ques #: 8,10,13,15,16,19,20,25,27,29,32,35,36,37
Chapter10: Ques #: 44,45,46,49,57,58,59,60,62,63,64,66,67,68,72
Chapter 11: Ques #: 2,6,11,14,16,23,25,27,29,34,35,36,37,39
Chapter 12: no questions
Chapter 13: #14
Chapter 14: #3
Chapter 15: #13
Chapter 16: no questions
Chapter 17: #3,16,17,27,28,29,36
Chapter 18: #9
Chapter 19: #1,3,7
Chapter 20: No questions
Chapter 21: #7
Chapter 22: #4,8,16,17,18

FYI: This book is the re-branded edition of a book previously called Kaplan GMAT Advanced
The two books are identical in terms of content (very minor changes); for exact changes see:

* No changes have been spotted in the book from the 8th edition
* Online question bank access was added with 100 or so questions
49 helpful votes
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on November 22, 2005
I have been been really busy with work and neither did I have too much time to study for GMATs, nor an extra grand to spend on a prep course. I needed above a 700 and I know from SAT practice that the prep courses are geared for students aiming for the mid 600s as the goal.

At least for me, I used the Princeton Review Cracking the GMAT (2006 edition) as a starter to familiarize myself with the test.

I think the 10th edition official guide by GMAC is a a great transition. Honestly, though, the CD was much more useful since it familiarized me with the actual computer format of the exam (although the CAT part of it is questionable - and be careful about doing too many practice questions from the book or the CD sice you might see some recylce on your 2 practice exams).

However, the best preparation is the GMAT 800 from Kaplan - it's not too great on the strategies, but if you learn by example like me, it's perfect since the examples are challenging and written for somebody aiming for above 93 percentile. I can't speak too much on the quant section, but the verbal section is awesome.

It has a great section on sentence correction which I found to be incredibly useful in improving my score. I really feel that by going through all the verbal questions, I learned the fundamental grammer that GMAT requires for a good score.

I was scoring on the practice in the mid 600s, and taking two days off work to completely go through the verbal section of this book was the key to getting me a 750 on the exam

Good luck with your exam and MBA application
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on June 9, 2011
People studying for the GMAT need to know that they can't do it without buying the GMAC official guide. Just don't do it. The Kaplan questions are good but they're not the same as the official guide. The official guide is the prime source of good questions and practice. HOWEVER, the role of Kaplan books like this is to harvest the strategies from them and use them on the practice question from the official guide. Also, if you are breaking down a math skill, some of the simpler questions may be helpful. I honestly haven't used this book much since I have a Kaplan premier book, but I don't think there's tons of new stuff. Heck, I haven't really looked at it so I don't know. Read the other reviews. But my previous point stands.
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VINE VOICEon September 20, 2005
Kaplan's GMAT 800 offers the most challenging sample problems for students who want a top score.

I raised my score 60 points from 650 on my first Powerprep run to 710 on the actual test with only three weeks of prep. Using both Kaplan and Princeton Review books offers the perfect well-rounded preparation. Princeton Review offers advice on how to read the questions and eliminate answers. ButKaplan has the advantage in sample problems (challenging and, for the most part, well-explained).

In my mind, Princeton Review seems to have less respect for the test. They want you to beat it by understanding its design amd seeing through its tricks. Kaplan, on the other hand, wants to help you do well through thorough review of the material. Both are important appraoches, and they complement each other well.
31 helpful votes
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on March 28, 2013
The first 2/3 of this book is verbal based and does a good job. I bought this book because I need work on math I had been getting about 85% percentile on practice GMAT. I was getting stumped on wayy too many questions.

This book does a decent job of reviewing key math concepts, but there has not been a single problem I couldn't do in my head. Compared with struggling over even medium difficulty problems on practice tests.

Alos in the verbal section there were questions I've seen outside of this book.

Never written a review before but had to put the book down and write this one.
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on December 30, 2013
Unless you are already testing really well and understand the madness that is reading and comprehension sections of the GMAT this book is probably not worth your time. In trying to understand the explanations for some of the answers I was more confused than when I started. Unless you are already testing over 720 probably and really need that extra boost I don't see it being worthwhile. I got a 660 and don't recall seeing anything like these questions on the exam.
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on December 11, 2005
My disclaimer, and I think it's a useful one: I used this book. I took the test. My (unofficial--haven't gotten the official report yet) score was 740, which was somewhere in the realm of 98th percentile, and about where I was wanting to end up. I don't think that the book is responsible for all of this, but I'm definitely in the realm of test-takers it's targeting. If you're *not* aiming for 700+, I'm pretty sure there are more useful books out there.

For my own purposes, however, I would say this book was good. I would suggest getting it, a general book, and the PowerPrep software from the GMAT people and using all of them. Do as many questions as you have time for. The harder ones will help. Do not, after that point, be surprised if the questions on the test don't seem nearly as hard as they ought to be--that almost sent me into a panic, when I neared the end of each section and things still seemed too easy to be doing well. It's okay.

No matter what method you use, you're going to need solid math and English skills to begin with. This can't give you those, but it's a good way to get used to the maddening sentence correction and data sufficiency questions that are like nothing you've ever had before. Time and practice and the brain you were born with will get you the best possible score, so I'd skip the expensive prep courses. You can find the easy-to-middling questions elsewhere, the hard ones here, and once you've finished this set, the test will be much less intimidating.
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on June 16, 2015
Its a good book to practice from. However if math is your weak spot, the explanation of how to solve the math equations is like a person who speaks english only, is all of a sudden forced to read chinese.

It's a good idea to purchase an additional math book for this GMAT exam
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