There are many case interview prep books out there in the market. Learning the right case interview strategies at the beginning of your preparation is critical to developing strong case interview skills.
Reading case interview books with poor strategies will make you develop bad skills and habits that will be difficult to change later on. Reading the best case interview books will expedite your learning and set you up for success.
Therefore, the case interview books you choose to read are critical in determining the efficiency in which you master case interviews. Before you invest any money or time in reading these books, you should know which books will be best for your case interview preparation.
In this article, we’ll provide a comprehensive summary and review of the 12 most popular case interview books. As a caveat, the first two books are our own case interview prep books, but we have tried to keep all of the reviews as unbiased as possible by capturing the feedback from Amazon reviews by other readers.
Before reviewing each book in detail, here is a quick overview of the very best case interview books we recommend:
Hacking the Case Interview (by Taylor Warfield)
We strongly recommend Hacking the Case Interview as the first case interview book you should read. It teaches the most efficient way to learn case interviews to make the best use of your time. The strategies and methods in this book are much more updated and robust than traditional strategies found in Case Interview Secrets and Case in Point. Additionally, the practice cases closely simulate real case interviews.
What You’ll Learn
This book provides step-by-step strategies for the nine different parts of a case interview:
- Understanding the case background information
- Verifying objectives
- Developing a framework
- Handling the moment of silence
- Presenting your framework
- Starting the case
- Solving quantitative problems
- Answering qualitative questions
- Delivering a recommendation
For each step of the case interview, the author tells you exactly what you need to say and do. For example, you’ll learn how to create unique and tailored frameworks, how to solve any market sizing or profitability problem, and what structure you should use to deliver an outstanding recommendation. Along the way, the author teaches you strategies that go beyond just solving the case to help you distinguish yourself from other candidates.
The book also provides an overview of essential business concepts you should know, which is helpful for candidates that do not have a business background. There are five full-length practice cases that you can do individually or with a case interview partner.
Hacking the Case Interview has consistently received reviews as the most concise and straight to the point case interview prep book in the market. There is no fluff, anecdotal stories, or long explanations that many other case interview books have. The book breaks down case interviews in a simple, clear, and concise format for easy understanding and application.
The book has received praise for its robust framework strategy, which allows candidates to showcase their natural business intuition instead of using stale, memorized frameworks. Many other case interview texts push for methods or frameworks that are overly complex and not that effective.
The primary feedback from readers is for more practice cases to be included in the book, which is what led the author to write “The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook.” That book provides additional practice problems and practice cases to supplement this book.
The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook (by Taylor Warfield)
Once you have learned the right case interview strategies, we highly recommend The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook to hone your case interview skills. The 15 practice cases can be done individually or with a partner and closely simulate the case interviews you’ll see on interview day. If there are particular areas of the case interview that you struggle with, you can hone in on those areas by doing over 65 practice problems across nine different types of case interview questions.
What You’ll Learn
The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook is meant to supplement Hacking the Case Interview by providing high-quality practice problems and practice cases. The book provides over 65 different problems tailored towards each type of case interview question:
- Framework questions
- Market sizing and estimation questions
- Profitability questions
- Charts and graphs questions
- Brainstorming questions
- Business judgment questions
- “Why consulting?” question
- “Why this firm? question
- Behavioral interview questions
For each question, the book provides a step-by-step explanation of the solution.
Additionally, the book provides 15 full-length practice cases that are based on real interviews from top-tier consulting firms such as McKinsey, BCG, and Bain. An additional benefit of these practice cases is that they are written in such a way that they can be done individually or with a partner.
Reviews have consistently complimented the wide range of high-quality practice problems and practice cases that The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook provides. One reviewer mentioned that out of 33 case interviews, 25 of them had cases that were similar or relevant to the practice cases in this book. Readers have found the explanations in the book to be clear and insightful, helping them improve their case interview abilities.
Reviews also mention that this book is great for practicing case interviews on your own because they are written in a format such that they can be done individually or with a partner.
Since this book focuses on case interview practice, it only provides a brief summary of case interview strategies in each section. To learn case interview strategies, you should supplement this book with “Hacking the Case Interview” or another case interview prep book that teaches you strategies.
As of this time, there have been no negative reviews or comments on the book.
Case Interview Secrets (by Victor Cheng)
The book is definitely worth a read. Overall, it provides great explanations of essential case interview concepts. The stories and anecdotes in the book are entertaining and help paint a clear picture of what to expect in a case interview, what interviewers are looking for, and how to solve a case interview.
What You’ll Learn
This book is organized into seven parts:
- An overview of the case interview process
- Quantitative assessments used in the consulting recruiting process
- Case interview problem-solving tools
- Case interview frameworks
- The candidate-led case interview format
- Other types of case interview formats
- How to pull all the skills together to get the job offer
This book covers fundamental case interview concepts you should know, such as the hypothesis, issue tree or framework, drill-down analysis, and synthesis. In the framework section, you’ll learn three different types of frameworks: profitability, business situation, and mergers and acquisitions framework.
Finally, you’ll learn the differences between a candidate-led case, interviewer-led case, written case interview, group case interview, and presentation-only case interview.
Case Interview Secrets is the book I primarily used to land my job offer at Bain. It provides great explanations on fundamental case interview concepts. The book paints a clear picture of why case interviews are used, what to expect, and how interviewer’s evaluate candidates.
However, the book is quite a long read and some concepts and principles could have been summarized in a much shorter way, without using long stories and anecdotes.
Additionally, the framework strategy is a bit too simplistic to be effective in all case interviews. The book basically teaches you two frameworks. One framework is simply the formula for profit. The other framework is known as the business situation framework and is comprised of the elements of customer, competition, product, and company, to use in nearly all of your cases.
Now a days, interviewers can easily tell when you are using memorized frameworks, so just using this book’s framework strategy will not help you stand out among other candidates.
Finally, there are no practice cases in this book, so you’ll have to find practice problems and cases elsewhere.
Case in Point (by Marc Cosentino)
Case in Point is a decent book. Although it has been the best-selling case interview book on Amazon for a long time, the strategies in this book are outdated and overly complex. The practice cases are not representative of cases you’ll see in an actual case interview. However, it does cover a lot of fundamental business concepts by going through the 12 popular case scenarios, which may be helpful to read for those without a business background.
What You’ll Learn
Case in Point provides an overview of the different questions asked in consulting interviews, including questions about yourself, math questions, why you are interested in consulting, and case questions.
The book then dives deeper into case interviews, providing an overview of why they are used, the types of case interview questions, and the different formats of case interviews.
To solve case interviews, Case in Point introduces their case system, which starts off with four steps: summarizing the case information, verifying the objective, asking questions, and laying out a structure. The book then provides frameworks for 12 popular case scenarios.
At the end of the book, Case in Point provides 25 practice cases and additional cases on human capital and marketing.
Case in Point provides a ton of information by covering 12 different case scenarios. These may be helpful to read for people that do not have a strong business background.
However, Case in Point’s strategy of memorizing 12 different frameworks to apply to 12 different case scenarios does not work in case interviews now a days. Often, memorized frameworks will have elements that are not relevant and important to the particular case you receive. Even when they are relevant, interviewers can tell when you are using memorized frameworks and not thinking critically.
If you solely rely on the case system strategy in this book, you will have a hard time distinguishing yourself from other candidates.
Additionally, the practice cases in this book are too short and simple to be representative of cases you’ll actually see in a case interview. They are written in a dialogue format, making it difficult to practice on your own or with a partner.
Interview Math (by Lewis Lin)
Case Interview Math is a decent book. It is most helpful for candidates that are looking to improve their consulting math skills. The book provides plenty of practice on how to solve common types of problems, such as market sizing, profitability, and breakeven. However, the book lacks practice on how to use business judgment to correctly interpret answers to quantitative questions. You’ll likely need to supplement this book with other books or resources to get that type of practice.
What You’ll Learn
Case Interview Math focuses on the quantitative aspect of case interviews. It provides over 60 practice problems and answers on six different case interview math topics:
- Market sizing
- Revenue estimation
- Customer lifetime value
For each topic, the author provides ample practice questions and step-by-step solutions.
Case Interview Math is structured very clearly, so you can easily focus on the types of math problems that give you the most trouble. There are plenty of practice questions and clearly explained solutions.
However, the book focuses purely on doing math. It does not cover how to use business judgment to make sense of the numbers. Rather, it focuses on just calculating the correct answer and stopping there.
Embrace the Case Interview (Brad Schiller)
Embrace the Case Interview is a decent book. It covers a lot of material, including resumes and cover letters, behavioral interview questions, and case interviews. The information and strategies are all useful and better than most consulting interview prep books. However, there are a few case interview books that provide slightly more robust strategies and explain the different parts of the case interview in a bit more detail.
What You’ll Learn
Embrace the case covers the entire consulting recruiting process. The first part covers how to write a great resume and cover letter. The next part covers how to answer behavioral interview questions. The third part covers the case interview.
The book teaches a 6-prong approach to structure any case interview. These prongs are: profit, market, competition, company, trends, and risks. It briefly covers qualitative questions, quantitative questions, interpreting exhibits, and synthesizing information. Finally, there are eight practice cases included.
Unlike many other case interview books, Embrace the Case Interview covers how to write an outstanding resume and cover letter. The tips are helpful, but are not as comprehensive or detailed as many of the consulting resume and cover letter guides online that you can read for free.
The framework strategy presented in Embrace the Case Interview is similar to the framework strategy in Hacking the Case Interview, but is not as robust.
Embrace the Case provides great information on answering qualitative questions, quantitative questions, and delivering a recommendation.
Overall, the information in the book is collectively helpful. However, there are other case interview prep books that explain certain sections a bit more thoroughly and provide slightly more robust strategies.
Case Masters (by Valentin Nugmanov & Ron Clouse)
Case Masters is a decent case interview book to practice working through various different kinds of case interviews. While the cases are detailed and thorough, the pacing and style may not be representative of actual cases you’ll see in a consulting interview. Instead, the book focuses on providing more challenging cases to help you identify weakness areas. Because of this and the fact that there are only eight practice cases, you’ll likely need to supplement this book with other case interview books to get more practice.
What You’ll Learn
Case Masters contains eight practice cases that are designed to be more challenging than cases you’ll see in an actual case interview. The cases are meant to assess your readiness and identify areas for improvement in analysis, synthesis, calculation, and creativity.
What’s different about these cases are that they are concept-driven cases. Each case has one business concept that you will learn by the end of the exercise, such as competing in a multi-sided market.
Each case contains dialogue between the interviewer and candidate, a fact pack of the case information, a debrief of the case, and an explanation of the business concept.
The practice cases in the Case Masters are very thorough, detailed, and much longer in length than practice cases in other case interview books. The case dialogue helps the reader understand what the case interview sounds like and the case debrief provides a lot of learnings that the reader can take away.
The only potential issue with these practice cases is that they are not entirely representative of the types of cases you’ll see in real case interviews. A case interview goes quite quickly, usually lasting between 20 to 40 minutes. In a real case interview, you will not have the time to think through all of the potential considerations and get answers to all of your questions.
Nevertheless, the practice cases are entertaining to read and you’ll learn a new business concept in each case that you complete.
Case Weights: Beta Edition (by Ben Okon)
Case Weights is a decent workbook to practice your case interview skills. Although it goes into detail on how to approach the nine different components of the case interview, some of the strategies are unnecessarily complicated.
Additionally, the book does not provide as many practice problems as other case interview books and has no full-length practice cases. It may be helpful to read through the strategies presented, but know you’ll likely need to adapt the strategies to make them a bit simpler.
What You’ll Learn
Case Weights isolates the individual components of a case interview to provide you with specific actions to drill into each component and improve your skills. The book breaks down the case interview into nine different components:
- The Case Problem
- Market Sizing
- Charts / Exhibits
- Business Judgment
The book provides tips on how to approach each component, shows a few examples, and then provides a few drills to reinforce the approach.
Case Weights has an interesting way of breaking down the case interview into nine components, which make up the “Fortress of Caseitude.” The book is very structured in providing a lot of detail on tips to approach each component. However, some strategies are unnecessarily complicated. Other case interview books have strategies that are simpler and more effective than the strategies in this book.
The book provides a few drills in each section, but more practice problems are needed to really practice case interview math, market sizing, brainstorming, and interpreting charts and exhibits.
Finally, there are no full-length practice cases included, which would have been helpful to bring all of the learnings together.
Crack the Case System (by David Orhvall)
We do not recommend Crack the Case System. It overcomplicates the case interview process by providing many different mnemonics for the reader to memorize for different case situations. A lot of the information in the book is generic and common-sense. There are much better case interview books that provide more robust and effective strategies in a more succinct and easier to understand way.
What You’ll Learn
This book provides you an overview of the case interview timeline. It explains what skills you need to demonstrate in a case interview and then walks the reader through the different steps of the case interview.
It introduces the Maximum Value Model to cover five different types of case interview situations: strategy, operations, organization, finance, and specialty. For each type of situation, the book provides what questions and considerations you need to memorize to navigate through the case interview.
The book is supplemented with online material, including videos and online cases.
Readers of the book have commented that 25% of the book is useful and the rest is fairly generic information.
The first one hundred pages of the book provides a lot of generic case interview advice that does not need one hundred pages to explain. For example, the author tells you to be nice, avoid wearing unprofessional clothing, make small talk, and have a firm handshake, which does not add that much value to readers.
The strategies in this framework revolve around basic mnemonics. For example, one strategy provided is summarized as FRAME: form a plan, read the audience, anchor a hypothesis, mine for an answer, and end the case. Again, this information does not add that much value to readers.
The author’s Maximum Value Model is a massive set of different things to memorize for five different case scenarios. The Maximum Value Model is not only difficult to memorize, but ineffective in most case interviews.
Using memorized frameworks to solve case interviews is not the right way to solve cases. Often, the elements in your memorized framework will not be relevant to the case. Interviewers also know when you are regurgitating memorized information and not thinking critically for yourself.
Additionally, the supplementary online videos repeat a lot of the contents of the book. You do not need to purchase the book to get access to the online material, so if you decide to use this resource, you can get the same material online for free.
Overall, the book and online material overcomplicates the case interview process and presents a lot of generic case interview strategies using mnemonics.
20 Days to Ace the Case (by Destin Whitehurst & Erin Robinson)
We do not recommend 20 Days to Ace the Case. The book does not provide enough detailed strategies to tackle each part of the case interview. There are case interview books that provide more robust and effective strategies as well as higher-quality practice cases.
What You’ll Learn
20 Days to Ace the Case is structured into twenty different chapters that each cover what you need to learn or practice in each of the twenty days leading up to your case interview.
The book covers a variety of different topics:
- How to listen with intent
- How to break the case down
- Profitability framework
- Internal / external framework
- How to categorize and group
- How to show your leadership
- How to use a hypothesis
- How to make your point
There are also nine mock interviews included in the book.
Structuring the book to prepare for case interviews in 20 days is a very interesting concept, but unfortunately the book does not live up to expectations. Since half of the chapters are mock interviews, there is not that much content on actual case interview strategies.
For example, the book covers two very basic frameworks, the profitability framework and the internal/external framework. While these frameworks do work in certain case situations, the book does not cover how to create a framework for the majority of different case situations. Additionally, these frameworks are nothing special and will not help you distinguish yourself from other candidates.
If you were to solely rely on this book 20 days before your case interview, you would not learn enough strategies to tackle case interviews and you would likely not get enough practice.
Case Interviews for Beginners (by Stephen Pidgeon)
We do not recommend Case Interviews for Beginners. While it does provide basic and helpful information on case interviews, there are many other case interview books that do a much better job of it. There are no unique strategies or pieces of information in this book that other case interview books do not cover.
What You’ll Learn
Case Interviews for Beginners starts by providing an overview of what a case interview is, the different types of case interviews, and two examples of case interviews. It then covers a few basic case interview skills such as structure, numerical analysis, and business sense and judgment.
The book provides very basic information on the case interview. By the end of the book, you’ll understand what a case interview is and have an idea of what mistakes to avoid. However, the book does not offer too many actionable strategies for tackling each step of the case interview. For example, it does not go into detail on how to create an effective structure or how to deliver a structured recommendation.
While the book is fairly short in length at about 130 pages, it does repeat many points. Additionally, there are also no practice cases in Case Interviews for Beginners, so you will need to use other books and resources to practice anything that you have learned in the book.
Case Interview Workbook (by Robert Mellon)
The Case Interview Workbook is not worth your time or purchase. We strongly recommend that you use other case interview books or resources to practice case interviews.
What You’ll Learn
This book provides 60 different case interviews. They cases are sourced and collected from publicly available resources on the internet. Each question and solution has been edited by the author or the author’s friends and colleagues.
With 60 practice cases, the Case Interview Workbook sounds like a great resource, but unfortunately does not live up to expectations.
One, these cases are not representative of case interviews you’ll actually see on interview day as they are overly short and simplistic. Each practice case is only 1 – 2 pages long, covering only one or two questions each.
Two, these cases are taken from publicly available resources on the internet. A lot of the titles to the practice cases are taken directly from MBA casebooks. Why pay for these cases when you can use MBA casebooks for free? While the author claims to have edited these cases, they are still low-quality practice cases. There are many other case interview books that provide higher-quality practice cases.
Land your Dream Consulting Job
If you found this article helpful, you’ll love our comprehensive case interview course. The material in the course has helped 6,000+ students across 13+ countries land offers at top-tier consulting firms such as McKinsey, BCG, and Bain.