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Good Japanese Book

Have a textbook or grammar book that you find particularly helpful? What about a learning tip to share with others?

Good Japanese Book

Postby neo2407 » Thu 08.24.2006 6:45 pm

Hey, I'm just making this thread to tell everyone about a good book I got for learning Japanese.
It's from DK Eyewitness Travel. And it's called 15-Minute Japanese. (BTW it obviously doesn't teach you all of Japanese in just 15 minutes...unfortunatly lol)

It has about 153 pages of Japanese phrases, words, a mini dictionary, a 16-page menu guide (containing LOTS of Japanese foods), and 2 full Hiragana and Katakana tables.

It covers introductions, eating and drinking, travel, shopping and lots more. It also has mini tests inbetween sections. Each phrase and word is written in Romaji (I know, I know, avoid this) and also Hiragana. It also includes cultural and conversation tips. It even tells you how to get a taxi and about the "automatic bidet" on the hi-tech western style toliets...although that's probably a warning so that you don't get a nasty surprise lol.

There are 2 versions of the book. You can get just the book for about £6.99 (GB Pounds), or get the book and a few audio CD's to help with pronunciation, for about £12.99 (GB Pounds).

It's good for learning Japanese or even just going for a holiday.
Sorry if it sounds like advertising (if it does feel free to edit it so it doesn't lol), it really is a good book. I highly recommed it. Although the picture on the front looks a bit cheesy.
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby magma » Thu 08.24.2006 7:21 pm

£12.99 = $24.56 US (according to Google).

Sounds like an exceptionally good traveller's language book. Do you have plans to visit Japan?
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby neo2407 » Thu 08.24.2006 7:34 pm

Actually I plan on living in Japan by the time I'm 30, 35 at the latest. Got most things planned out. It's stuff in the next few years that needs more planning rather than 10 years. One bad thing though, I have to travel to London for the JLPT and that's several HUNDRED miles away from me :'( (May seem small to people from America but in the UK, especially Scotland, it's a huge distance to travel especially for an exam lol) . And I'll have to do that at least 3 times (JLPT levels 4, 3 and 2 at least).
And please don't think it's some teenagers fantasy and it will never happen. I will make sure it happens no matter what! (Unless I were to die or something...that would be a big problem lol)
Last edited by neo2407 on Thu 08.24.2006 7:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby magma » Thu 08.24.2006 7:39 pm

Are you saying your plan for moving to Japan depends on passing JLPT level 2?

Either way, if you're interested in becoming fluent in the language, you'd probably be better off using a proper textbook than a traveller's language book, even one as good as this. Textbooks are designed for long-haul students, and give you a firmer grounding in the language at the beginning. They make you practice the basics until you can do them without thinking.
Last edited by magma on Thu 08.24.2006 7:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby neo2407 » Thu 08.24.2006 8:04 pm

Umm...I don't think I said that, or ment to say that. Right now it depends on if I get in to a college course, which will allow me to do my highers next year (As I said in an other thread, highers are the Scottish version of England's A levels but harder, and I don't know the American equivilant). Then when I pass my highers I can do a Japanese course at University (of course if I teach myself well I may not need the full course but maybe evening classes just to sort out pronunciation and grammer etc.). And by the end of that I should be able to pass at least level 2 of the JLPT, possiblly even level 1.

Oh, umm...ignore that first sentence please. I just realised it kinda does depend on passing at least level 2, 'cause you need at least level 2 to get a good job in Japan don't you? (Please correct me if I'm wrong) Also I know what each level entails and I will be ready when the time comes.

At the speed I'm learning now by the time the JLPT's come next year I should be ready for at least level 4. I've only been actively learning Japanese for about a week or 2 and I already have the grammer etc. down and I know a few kanji and how many kanji does level 4 require? It's about 80 isn't it? So that should be no problem.
Although the biggest problem is money (well also a job in Japan and an apartment but that won't be for a while yet). I have an idea of what I can do but it may require a bit of time (that's why I said I was planning to be there by 30 and not mid-20's or something).

By the way is there a website out the were you can take a mock JLPT and see what level would be best for me next year? Just so I can see if I should take level 4 or 3 next year.
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby magma » Thu 08.24.2006 8:50 pm

By the way is there a website out the were you can take a mock JLPT and see what level would be best for me next year? Just so I can see if I should take level 4 or 3 next year.

See Clay-san's article for a link to where you can buy copies of previous version of the test, as well as study guides and links to other informative places.

Sounds like you're very determined to succeed. Since motivation is the most important factor, it looks like you're well prepared. ;)
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby richvh » Thu 08.24.2006 8:54 pm

Well, there's a website with a very few sample questions, and another with kanji quizzes for each level, but your best option is to buy some past tests to judge yourself against. And there's no need to take either 4 or 3 before 2, so you can save yourself a trip; just wait until you think you're ready for Level 2.
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RE: Good Japanese Book

Postby neo2407 » Fri 08.25.2006 7:26 am

magma wrote:
Sounds like you're very determined to succeed. Since motivation is the most important factor, it looks like you're well prepared. ;)


Yep, I've always wanted to move to Japan, but the big hinderance is there are only a few places in Scotland that do Japanese. But since I found this site it just got a lot easier. Thank you Clay-san :) .

richvh wrote:
And there's no need to take either 4 or 3 before 2, so you can save yourself a trip; just wait until you think you're ready for Level 2.


Oh, that's good. Save on train money and the £50 (about $94 US Dollars) each time to take the test.
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