2018 Book Review Of “PMP Exam Prep 9th Edition” By Rita Mulcahy

Title: PMP Exam Prep
Latest Edition: 9th Edition
Based On: PMBOK Guide 6th Edition
Amazon’s Best Seller?: Yes
Kindle Edition Available?: No
Downloadable pdf Available?: No
Author: Rita Mulcahy, PMP, et al.
Published By: RMC Publications
Publishing Year: 2018
Pages: 824
Short Description: Rita’s Course In A Book

My First Brush With Rita Mulcahy PMP Book

I completed my PMP certification in the year 2005. In those days, there were very few Exam preparation books. We didn’t have too many choices. I referred to PMP Exam Prep by Rita Mulcahy for my Exam preparation. My main source of study was the PMBOK Guide (for the Project Management Processes), but I constantly referred to Rita’s book. I did all the exercises from Rita’s book. I also did the exercises from Rita Mulcahy’s PM FasTrack CD. I must mention that the Rita’s exercises were quite helpful for the Exam preparation.

Let us come to the current day. Rita Mulcahy’s book has been around for a while. The book has been highly recommended ever since I have heard about PMP Exam. Over the years, it has remained an international best seller. Unfortunately, the primary Author (Ms. Rita Mulcahy) is no more living. She expired a few years ago. But, even after her demise, RMC Publications has maintained the standard of the book. They have been updating and releasing new editions of the book to conform to the PMI changes.

As with any other product, the book has its pluses and minuses. Let me share my opinion with you.

Rita Mulcahy 9th Edition Book Review

The book is written in a conversational manner. As you read the book, you feel that Ms. Mulcahy is talking to you. The language of the book is easy to understand and lucid. The style of the writing & the language would appeal to most of the readers.

The book is completely focused on the PMP Exam. It does not talk about any extraneous details. It keeps your feet firmly on the ground by constantly reminding you about the PMP Exam. It gives you all the right ingredients for the success in the PMP Exam.

The book starts with a chapter on tricks and tips for the PMP Exam. I think this chapter is the best part of the book. You will find all the tricks that are needed to solve PMP Exam questions in this chapter. This chapter is very well written and many PMPs vouch for it. Without belittling the value of the rest of the book, I think you can buy the book only for this chapter.

The Chapter 3 is another important chapter of the book. It contains famous “Rita’s Process Chart”. Some trainers and aspirants swear by this Process Chart because it is easy to understand. But, I find it very disconcerting. The Process Chart is somewhat different from the PMBOK Guide’s processes. This was the only reason why I studied processes from the PMBOK Guide during my Exam preparation. In fact, I have noticed that many other students also get confused by Rita’s Process Chart. If you find it confusing, you can ignore this chapter and read the rest of the book. Otherwise, it could be detrimental for the Exam. You can refer to the PMBOK Guide or some other source for the processes.

Every other chapter of the book starts with a small background and introduction. The author(s) relates the current chapter with other project management topics. This relationship prepares a solid foundation for the Exam. In all the chapters, there are probing questions and exercises within the chapter. This helps in learning the topics completely. In addition, there are PMP sample questions at the end of each chapter. These questions are very good and must be done by every PMP aspirant.


Chapter 1 “Tricks of the Trade” – Tips and tricks for passing the Exam


  • The book provides complete details about PMI way of doing Project Management. It calls them PMI-isms. These are very important for solving Exam questions.
  • The book probes you with mid-chapter questions and exercises. These are very good for learning purposes.
  • The end of chapter exercises are extremely good. They prepare you well for the exam.
  • The book keeps your feet firmly on the ground. It constantly reminds you of the difficulty level of the PMP Exam.
  • The book follows a conversational style of writing, which is easy to follow.
  • Overall the book is completely focused on the Exam.


  • The book follows its own process chart which is somewhat different from PMBOK Guide processes. This may be confusing for some learners.
  • At many places, the language and tone of the book is somewhat harsh, which may not appeal to everyone.
  • There are very few diagrams and explanatory pictures. This may create a problem for the visual learners.
  • The book is very expensive as compared to other competing books in the market.

PM-by-PM Rating

Ease of Study: (4.0 / 5)
Coverage of Topics: (4.5 / 5)
Questions & Exercises: (4.5 / 5)
Conformance to PMBOK® Guide: (3.5 / 5)
Exam Focus: (5.0 / 5)
Price: (3.5 / 5)
Average: (4.2 / 5)

Who Should Buy This Book?

PMP Exam Prep by Rita Mulcahy is a very good book for PMP Exam preparation. The book assumes that the reader has experience of managing a few projects. If you have managed a few projects, then you should click here and buy Rita Mulcahy’s book. However, you should treat it as a companion book to the PMBOK Guide. You will need to refer to the Guide as the process and ITTO described in this book are somewhat different from the Guide. You should also keep a process chart handy for ready reference while studying this book. You can click here to buy one such process chart – The PMP Exam: Quick Reference Guide. In the next section you can look at the other products offered by RMC Publications. These products are very popular because historically they were the best. However, I would not recommend you to buy any of them since they are very pricey. Moreover, products offered by the competitors are as good as RMC’s products, if not better.

Quick Comparison of PMP Study Products from RMC Publications

PMP Exam Prep Hot Topics Flashcards Hot Topics Audio Flashcards PM Fastrack PM Fastrack Exam Prep Combo
Overview Rita Mulcahy’s book Flashcards for reviewing hard topics Electronic flashcards for reviewing hard topics Exam Simulation software with question bank 3-in-1 combo.

It Includes Rita’s Book, Flashcards, and PM Fastrack s/w

Latest Edition 9th edition 9th 8th 8th 8th
Publication Date February 2018 February 2018 June 2013 July 2013 April 2016
Format Paperback Paperback Audio CD CD-ROM Paperback for book

Spiral-bound or Audio CD for flashcards (as per buyer’s choice)

CD-ROM for simulation s/w

Pages 824 704 624
PMP Exam Sample Questions Chapter end questions No No 1500+ Book – chapter end questions

simulation s/w – 1500+

Flashcards No 300+ No No 300+
Electronic Flashcards No No 300+ No 300+
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Disclosure: I have not received any compensation (in cash or kind) from the Authors or the Publishers or anyone else associated with the book for writing this article. But this article contains affiliate links – it means that, if you click & buy from these links then, I will receive a small commission. This commission helps me in maintaining this blog for free. However, you don’t pay anything extra. I do not actively use any of these books since I am already certified. But, I recommend only those products that I believe will definitely help the certification aspirants.

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Praveen Malik, PMP

​Praveen Malik ​is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP®) with a rich 23+ years of experience. He is a leading Project Management Instructor, Coach and ​Advisor. He ​has successfully trained thousands of aspirants for the PM certification exams.