Which is the better book for mastering the IIT-JEE Physics

exam: Fundamentals of Physics (1960 physics textbook) or H. C.

Verma?

Resnick Halliday is a great book, as well as H C Verma.

However, there is a third book which I would like to highlight here, that,

in my opinion, is actually the best book, and is really an asset in terms

of theory as well as numericals. Now, when I am talking about learning

physics, we first understand the basics of theory (laws, formulae,

application, etc.), and then we go to the numericals section to

understand the application of theory and formulae or interrelation of

the above two.

When you are starting with Resnick Halliday, the problem is that it is

written for those students who are presumed to already have a

working knowledge of the concepts that we are supposed to learn in

11th and 12th standard. Similarly, H C Verma is a book which is

focused mainly for understanding the application of theory and

formulae into numericals (which is why for a book on physics it is

comparatively thin). Now, as a student who is now learning classical

mechanics, rotational mechanics, electrostatics, etc. in depth you are

supposed to understand the underlying principles and the concepts

associated with them, and here comes the third book. This book is

called Elements of Physics by Dutta Pal Choudhury. Now, be careful

there are a lot many derivatives and newer versions of this book, but if

you want the best version, go for Dutta Pal and Choudhury only. This

book was followed earlier by the West Bengal State Board for 11th

and 12th standard. This book, in its own simple ways, explains all

concepts of physics in such lucid and simple language that you will

definitely grasp the idea behind any topic. So, when I was in my 11th

grade, I started with this book, and read it thoroughly and rigorously.

Then I solved all numericals systematically, and then only went on to Resnick Halliday to polish some of my concepts. To enhance the

learning process, I solved problems from Resnick as well, and then

finally solved H C Verma to get a holistic view of the problems

generally asked in physics papers. Now, if you ask whether Resnick

and H C Verma can be followed as text or not, then my answer will be

Yes, but only after you have a basic understanding of all the concepts.

So, to summarize, start with DPC, then solve Resnick Halliday and H

C Verma.

But if you really want to challenge yourself, then you can solve

Problems in General Physics by I E Irodov. Please keep in mind that

Irodov has to be solved only after you are done with the above 3

books. Else you will get frustrated, because Irodov has very

unconventional problems which requires you to think out of the box

and beyond the regular theory. It requires to imagine hypothetical

situations. Then only you will be able to attempt the questions (my

favourite is effective resistance of an infinite grid of resistors, each of

resistance R).

Please note that rotational mechanics is really good in H C Verma.

The explanation of centripetal and centrifugal force is the best in H C

Verma. Rest other concepts you can follow the above mentioned

pattern.

Finally, last but not the least, there are different versions of Resnick

Halliday (Resnick Halliday Walker, Resnick Halliday Krane, etc.). I had

studied a combined volume of Resnick Halliday Walker - a red colour

book with the title of the book written in black on the cover - very

uninteresting looking. But once you open it and start reading it, then

you will why it is so good.