- Private Pilot Test Prep 2004
- Airplane Flying Handbook
- Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge
- FAR/AIM 2003 (Federal Aviation Regulations / Airman Information Manual)
- Aviation Weather
- Accident Prevention Manual for Glider Pilots
The Private Pilot process involves three kinds of testing. The first is the written exam, which is all multiple choice. The Test Prep book contains all the possible questions (and answers). There is an incredible amount of material in there.
The second part of the process is the oral exam with an FAA examiner. The examiner will get a copy of your written test report with a list of questions you missed, just to ensure that you get quizzed on any area where you might be weak.
The final part is the practical test, where you carry the FAA examiner as a passenger, and they will ask you to perform various maneuvers to ensure that you are proficient in flying the airplane.
Once you take the written exam, your score is good for two years without having to take it again. So there's no harm in taking it early other than forgetting the material when it comes time for the oral exam (normally the oral and practical are done on the same day). I'll probably do the written in a few months and then the rest of it when the weather gets better.
I know what I'm going to be studying over the break!