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It might have been a bummer to discover that the "critical" in "critical reading" did not mean you could yell things like, "Who's your daddy now, Dickens?" during a test, but cheer up, MacShmoopers.

Shmoop's guide to the AP English Literature exam will help you navigate the murky waters of literature...critically.

Test-Taking Tips

Specifically designed for mastering the AP English Literature and Composition exam. Learn what the word "critical" actually means, how to decode—and beat—those pesky free response prompts, and the fine art of memorizing the mysterious language of literary analysis.

Three Full-Length Practice Exams

The seminal classic "Eeny meeny miney moe" is an appropriate decision-making tool in a variety of life venues…but not on the AP English Literature test. Practice the complete test thrice so you don't have to sing that song.

Practice Drills

Every topic has enough practice drills to help you refine your literary skills enough to get you out of freshman English.

Extreme Topic Review

Works will range mostly from the 16th to 21st centuries and cover a spectrum of poetry, prose, drama and fiction, but you are in no way expected to have read 600 years worth of literature in every one of these categories. That's crazy talk. With Shmoop's help you'll be ready to whale on this exam like Pinocchio on Monstro the whale.

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Get started on the path to your dream AP English Literature score by taking the Diagnostic Exam and see where you need some polish.

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  • Terms of Literary Analysis

  • Poetry

  • Prose

  • Drama

  • Imagery and Figurative Language

  • Audience and Purpose

  • Literary Devices and Rhetorical Strategies

  • Organizational and Other Authorial Choices

  • Voice, Tone, and Attitude

  • Passages, Lines, and Sentences

  • Literary Comprehension, Restatements and Summaries

  • Characterizations

  • Form and Structure

  • Key Mistakes and Test Strategies

  • Diction and Syntax, Meaning of Words and Parts of Speech

  • Reading Prose and Poetry Passages

  • The Free Response Section

  • Thesis Statements

  • Essay Structures and Components

  • The Poetry Essay, The Prose Essay and The Open Essay

  • And a lot more!

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