Hi Fillyjonk, I've got quite a number of theory books up to G5 and this is what I posted last year about them....
QUOTE(skylark @ Jul 26 2008, 11:37 AM)
There are several books etc you could use for Grade 5. The ABRSM ones are:
Music Theory in Practice - this gives some brief explanations and lots of exercises to do. No answers though, so you could do with finding a teacher to make sure your answers are right. I found that even though I was confident I'd got the right answers, my confidence was sometimes misplaced when my teacher marked my answers!
First Steps in Music Theory - I find this an excellent little pocket book. It covers everything grade by grade from 1 to 5, so it's all in manageable chunks and you're not overwhelmed with more information than you need to know.
The AB Guide to Music Theory Part 1 (the pink book) - I find this book very offputting. There's a mass of information, presented very badly (in my opinion), and I probably would have been put off theory for life if I'd had to use this book. Only my opinion though, others may love it.
Past Papers - you can get sets of papers for each grade, and you can also get model answers as well. It's well worth while doing several sets to get used to the format of the questions. Sometimes they throw in what I would regard as a "trick" question, and it's useful to have come across these in the past.
There are quite a few non-ABRSM books which are also very useful, eg
Take 5 and Pass First Time - Christopher Dunn
Pass Grade 5 Theory - Dorothy Dingle
Some of the books have been discussed in more detail in previous threads - just click on the links below:
Take 5 (and other books)
Theory of Music books
QUOTE(Fillyjonk @ Mar 24 2009, 02:55 PM)
I am always quite keen on lots of background info, and I like to know why things are the way they are
I think the book which gives the most background info, in reader-friendly explanations, is Dorothy Dingle's book, and there are also lots of exercises in it which you might enjoy doing whilst you're without your violin. No answers though, but if there's anything you're uncertain about, you can always ask on here.