I use the Donaldson casebook as well and I'm struggling too. Probably because my professor started really slowly in the beginning, maintained that slow pace for a few weeks, and then kicked it up. My plan is to read the entire book in 2 weeks, take notes as I go, and incorporate any information from the Gilbert's Taxation of Individuals outline that I find helpful. Also - going to spend time reading all the code and regulation sections that are referenced in the book. This is not going to be a fun 2 weeks before the exam but it can be done... a positive attitude is required.