14 best faang interview books in 2021 [get a faang job] with faded black background

14 Best FAANG Interview Books in 2021 [Get a FAANG Job]

FAANG interview books are for developers who are ready to get hired at their dream job.

Did you know that for many FAANG interviews, they expect you to solve the problem in under 30 minutes?

That means you need to practice.

So we found 14 of the best FAANG interview books out there to help you get started.

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation if you buy something. Read my disclosure for more details.

TLDR: Best FAANG Interview Books in 2021

We picked the absolute best FAANG interview books based on the following criteria:

🔥 Best Overall 🔥
Cracking the Coding Interview

💥 Best for Newbies 💥
Grokking Algorithms

💸 Best Value 💸
Programming Interviews Exposed

Best FAANG Interview Books

Maybe you’re looking for system design questions. Or perhaps you want tips on passing the whiteboarding interview.

Either way, we think there’s something for everyone preparing for their FAANG interview.

1. Cracking the Coding Interview

Cracking the Coding Interview book laying on dry cracked earth

Cracking the Coding Interview has long been regarded as the Holy Grail of FAANG interview books.

Author Gayle Laakmann McDowell has experience both as a software engineer and interviewer at FAANG companies.

The first part of the book walks you through the interview process.

In addition, you’ll take a look behind the scenes at FAANG companies. And you’ll learn what they look for in interviews.

Also, you’ll learn about behavioral questions, technical questions and navigating the job offer.

The second half of the book covers 189 programming questions asked at actual FAANG interviews.

Problems range from easy to difficult.

Every problem contains hints that you’d get at actual interviews. Then there’s a solution walkthrough.

Most solutions are written in Java.

Read our full review of Cracking the Coding Interview.


2. Programming Interviews Exposed

Programming Interviews Exposed by John Mongan, Noah Kindler, et al. is one of the best FAANG interview books on our list today.

Programming Interviews Exposed cover with overhead of runners crossing finish line

In additions to problems and solutions, you’ll also examine complete walkthroughs to explain concepts.

First you’ll work on traditional problems like data structures and algorithms.

Then you’ll work on more modern problems such as:

  • machine learning
  • statistics
  • data science
  • probability

And more.

In addition, you’ll learn how to interact with interviewers to give them the answers they are seeking.

Also, you’ll learn how to effectively navigate phone screens with recruiters.


3. The Algorithm Design Manual

The Algorithm Design Manual book scover with various diagrams & red background

The Algorithm Design Manual is one of the best FAANG interview books on the market.

Author Steven Skiena uses relatable stories to accompany and reinforce concepts.

The book is separated into two sections.

First, you’ll learn about methods for designing and analyzing algorithms.

Then, you’ll learn about algorithmic resources and implementations.

The Algorithm Design Manual is heavy with color illustrations.

There are over 100 new algorithm problems. In addition, there are up-to-date links to learn about the best implementations in C, C++ and Java.


4. Algorithms

Algorithms by Robert Sedgewick and Kevin Wayne is one of the leading textbooks in tech education worldwide.

This fourth edition examines some of the most important data structures and algorithms in use today. It includes 50 must-know algorithms.

You’ll learn about:

  • fundamentals
  • sorting
  • searching
  • graphs
  • strings
  • context

And much, much more.

There’s a companion course on Coursera that contains:

  • full Java implementations
  • exercises and answers
  • programming assignments
  • test data
  • visualizations

And much more.

So if you learn better in an academic setting, Algorithms may be the textbook (and course) for you.

Sequential search description and table in Algorithms in a Nutshell book
Sequential search lesson in the textbook Algorithms

5. Coding Interviews: Questions, Analysis & Solutions

Coding Interviews coding interview books cover black and grey with yellow letters

Coding Interviews by Harry He covers 5 components that determine a candidate’s performance.

First of all, you’ll cover the basics of programming languages, data structures and algorithms.

Next, you’ll learn how to write high-quality code. Then, you’ll go over technical tips to solve difficult programming problems.

After that, you’ll learn core methods which optimize code.

Finally, you’ll work on the soft skills required to make any FAANG interview a success.

To illustrate the five components above, you’ll look at questions asked at actual FAANG interviews.

In addition to the problems are detailed solutions with step-by-step walkthroughs.


6. The Complete Coding Interview Guide in Java

The Complete Coding Interview Guide in Java cover with tropical leaves

The Complete Coding Interview Guide in Java by Anghel Leonard contains over 200 problems. Each problem contains solutions written in Java.

The book is separated into two sections.

First you will go through non-technical interview questions.

Then, you’ll go through over 200 coding problems and their hands-on solutions.

Some topics include:

  • arrays
  • strings
  • maps
  • searching
  • sorting
  • linked lists

And more.

In addition, you’ll learn about more difficult concepts like concurrency and system scalability.

The Complete Coding Interview Guide in Java will help you build your skills such as how to approach problems in a more efficient way.

By the end of the book, you should be ready to confidently take on your FAANG interview.


7. Grokking Algorithms

Grokking Algorithms by Aditya Bhargava isn’t a FAANG interview book per se. Rather, it’s a book to help you hone in on your algorithm skills before you prepare for the interview.

Grokking Algorithms cover with 5 rats sitting and one standing

But it’s such an awesome book that we had to recommend it.

You’ll start with the basics such as sorting and searching.

Then you’ll graduate to more complex concepts like data compression and artificial intelligence.

Every example contains diagrams and fully annotated code samples.

In addition, there are over 400 illustrations.

By the end of Grokking Algorithms you’ll have mastered a vast array of algorithms.

Furthermore, you’ll know where to implement them.

All code samples are written in Python.

Grokking Algorithms book with Binary Search explanation with 2 illustrations
Binary search lesson in Grokking Algorithms

8. 40 Algorithms Every Programmer Should Know

FANG interview prep book 40 algorithms every programmer should know with wood rings

40 Algorithms Every Programmer Should Know by Imran Ahmad is ideal for developers who want to write efficient code.

You’ll examine data structures and algorithms that are in Python libraries.

Some of what you’ll learn includes implementing graph algorithms for fraud detection.

In addition, you’ll use machine learning algorithms to process Twitter data in real time.

Then you’ll use supervised learning algorithms to predict weather patterns. Plus, you’ll create a recommendation engine.

This is not an exhaustive list.

40 Algorithms Every Programmer Should Know is one of the better FAANG interview books for developers serious about building their algorithms base.

It’s useful for both beginners and experienced programmers.

All solutions are in Python.


9. Elements of Programming Interviews in Python

Elements of Programming Interviews in Python with Python logo

Elements of Programming Interviews in Python by Adnan Aziz, Tsung-Hsien Lee, et al. is ideal for programmers fluent in the Python programming language.

There are over 250 problems complete with solutions. In addition, there are over 200 figures to illustrate concepts.

First you’ll learn about non-technical portions of interviews.

This includes:

  • interview strategies
  • common mistakes made at interviews
  • tips on offer negotiation

And much more.

In addition, you’ll learn about some key data structures, algorithms and problem solving techniques.

Then you’ll move onto the interview problems.

They’re separated by concept:

  • searching
  • sorting
  • algorithm design principles
  • concurrency

Every chapter contains a case study, tips and library methods.

Python not your preferred programming language? Check out Elements of Programming Interviews in C++ or Elements of Programming Interviews in Java.


10. Coding Interview Questions

FANG interview prep book Coding Interview Questions with crow

Coding Interview Questions by Narasimha Karumanchi contains a series of questions asked at actual FAANG interviews.

These questions cover:

  • data structures
  • algorithms
  • design interview

And beyond.

Every problem contains a detailed solution.

According to some reviews, some of these FAANG interview questions are basic.

So if you’re looking for more challenging questions, you may want to check out The Design Algorithm Manual.

Coding Interview Questions is ideal for beginners preparing for their FAANG interview.

programming techniques with procedural modular and object-oriented programming diagrams
Different programming types in Coding Interview Questions

11. Daily Coding Problem

Daily Coding Problem in white with seafoam background

Daily Coding Problem by Alex Miller and Lawrence Wu is one of the best FAANG interview books for developers who need practice.

The idea is that you work on one coding problem per day. And then you’ll be ready for FAANG interviews.

With almost 300 pages, you’ll work on problems related to:

  • linked lists
  • arrays
  • heaps
  • trees
  • graphs
  • randomized algorithms
  • dynamic programming

And much, much more.

There’s also a section on design where you’ll work with data structure design and system design.

Every problem includes a detailed solution which will walk you through the core concepts.


12. Python Flash Cards: Syntax, Concepts, and Examples

Okay, so I know Python Flash Cards by Eric Matthes isn’t a book.

But the reason it made the list of best FAANG interview books is because, according to researchers, flashcards are effective practice.

By self-testing, you can hone in on your Python skills and prepare for that FAANG interview.

With 101 challenges, you’ll brush up on your foundational programming skills.

Plus you’ll work through a series of exercises and challenges to deepen your understanding of Python.

In addition, you can work on:

  • data structures
  • logical control
  • program flow
  • Python syntax

And beyond.

These flashcards might be just the boost you need to help you pass the technical interview in Python.

String explanation in one of the Python Flash Cards

🔥 Geena’s Hot Take

Trust the studies!

Use flash cards!

Seriously, every time I’ve used flashcards, I’ve done better on a test… By several percentage points.

If you don’t use these flashcards, do yourself a favor and make some.


13. Surviving the Whiteboard Interview

Surviving the Whiteboard Interview cover with cartoon computer and accessories

We think Surviving the Whiteboard Interview by William Gant is a must-have FAANG interview book.

First, you’ll learn how to overcome the psychological hurdles of the whiteboard interview such as:

  • public speaking
  • performing under pressure
  • interacting with strangers

And beyond.

You’ll learn the soft skills needed to pass the whiteboard interview.

In addition, you’ll learn how to improve certain aspects of your interview by:

  • tailoring your resume
  • cleaning up your online persona
  • pre-interview research
  • learning during the interview

And more.

Surviving the Whiteboard Interview is an excellent soft skills resource to prepare for FAANG interviews.


14. System Design Interview

system design books system design interview cover with blue background

The system design interview is often regarded as one of the most difficult technical interviews.

System Design Interview by Alex Xu delivers a 4-step framework to solve any system design problem.

Using real-world examples, you’ll work on 16 system design problems like like:

  • key-value stores
  • web crawlers
  • URL shorteners
  • chat systems
  • YouTube
  • Google Drive

And more.

There are 188 diagrams included to demonstrate how different systems operate.

In addition, you’ll learn about what interviewers are looking for.


FAANG Interview Books: Conclusion

Today we showed you the best FAANG Interview books.

But 3 stood out among the rest:

Best Overall
Cracking the Coding Interview

Best for Newbies
Grokking Algorithms

Best Value
Programming Interviews Exposed


Up Next:

  1. Is The Algorithm Design Manual a good book?

    The Algorithm Design Manual is one of the best FAANG interview books on the market. Author Steven Skiena uses relatable stories to accompany and reinforce concepts. The book is separated into two sections. First, you'll learn about methods for designing and analyzing algorithms. Then, you'll learn about algorithmic resources and implementations. The Algorithm Design Manual is heavy with color illustrations.
    There are over 100 new algorithm problems. In addition, there are up-to-date links to learn about the best implementations in C, C++ and Java. Keep in mind that this is a 700+ page textbook. So it's best for students that learn best in an academic setting.

  2. What are the best FAANG interview books?

    There are plenty of good FAANG interview books out there, but we chose the best based on the following criteria. For best overall, we think Cracking the Coding Interview takes the win. For newbies, we think Grokking Algorithms is the way to go. And for best value, we liked Programming Interviews Exposed.

  3. Is the book System Design Interview worth it?

    We think System Design Interview is worth it. You'll learn about a 4-step framework to solve any system design problem. Using real-world examples, you'll work on 16 system design problems. There are 188 diagrams included to demonstrate how different systems operate. In addition, you'll learn about what interviewers are looking for.