(Original post by Poppyxx)
You can, and are encouraged to, drop one subject at the end of your first year. I dropped Economics. Tripartite PPEists (those who do all 3) are rare because it really restricts the depth of each subject that you can achieve.
By the time you get to 2nd year you could weight your Politics options very heavily in favour of political philosophy anyway (e.g. taking Theory of Politics, Political Thought: Plato to Rousseau / Bentham to Weber etc).
Or drop it altogether!
Looks like you've got a good spread of uni choices there. I have no idea what the issue is with Warwick - out of the 7 PPEists in my year in my college, 3 of us applied to Warwick and we all got rejected... Within a month of receiving our Oxford offers as well. Presumably some people get in but they just seem to be looking for a different sort of candidate...
I didn't apply to York because you have to do all 3 subjects for all 3 years, which didn't appeal to me. This may have changed since I was applying, but they were very proud of being the only (I think) university to offer a 'true' PPE degree.
You've picked some good books to read so far. There's another book called 'An Introduction to Political Philosophy' which is good as well, but a lot of applicants read it. The key is to read stuff that engages you with the subjects - don't read Plato's Republic if you can't stand it, find something else. You are incredibly unlikely to be asked about the books you said you read (if you list some in your PS) in the interview, but obviously those books and what else you read can help you in the interview. What helped me was having a really good grasp of concepts like democracy, socialism, communism... But that was just the direction my interview took. I couldn't have predicted that. At the time of my application I was focussed on globalisation for another reason, so my reading took me in that direction (Globalisation and its Discontents - Stiglitz. Why Globalisation Works - Wolf).
Did anything come up on that in my interview? No. But it helped me frame my PS - I spoke about the link between Politics and Economics through it. Some interviewers will use the books/areas you mention in your PS as a launchpad, others (as in my case) will ignore it and just ask what they want to ask.
Bookwise - don't mention you've read Freakonomics in your PS. My Econ tutor said he'd shred the next PS he read that mentioned that book... I think he was joking, but the point is it's a good book but too many people mention it and it's not going to help a whole lot in your interview.
Sorry this post is long - but one final thought is that what helped me most with the Economic aspect of preparing was preparation I did with other people at school, not what I read really. Our teacher set one of us a topic to explore each week, and we had to do a presentation on it to the rest of the group. Most was over and above the A Level syllabus, or taking something on the A Level Syllabus to the next level.