Hello! I finally got the video uploaded with all the books I own. I’ll just add a blurb about each book here and if you have any questions feel free to email or contact me! Keep in mind, these are just my opinions and its based on my experience and learning style. Pick whatever works best for you, and my opinions are by no means the end all, be all.
- “Elementary Japanese” Tuttle Publishing. I love this textbook. I know lots of people say they like Genki better, but I feel like Genki is a little rushed, introducing too many grammar points per chapter. This one feels just right. Although, if you want to learn faster, this textbook isn’t for you. A drawback is that this book doesn’t have workbook, or at least that I could see. This has lots of good beginning grammar points and examples.
- “Japanese for Busy People” is something I wouldn’t recommend buying if you are serious about learning. Its ok, but there is some romaji, its slow and doesn’t point out essential grammar in my opinion. I recommend buying a different book.
- “Japanese Kanji Power” This has been an invaluable resource in my learning. I always look at it, especially since I’m only in Japanese 3 and we are hitting the Kanji pretty hard this year. It gives examples and is very thorough. I highly recommend this if you’re serious about your kanji.
- “Kanji Pict-o-Graphix” GREAT!! I love this, if I have trouble memorizing a kanji for a test, I look in this book and find a pict-o-gram to help me remember what it looks like. Definitely buy this.
- “Essential Japanese Grammar” Another favorite. There is a section on Grammar and a section on Usage. If I don’t understand a grammar point my teacher is trying to explain, sometimes this book helps me understand. They have every kind of example sentence imaginable. This really helps me study. When I can see how its used in real life, its easier to remember.
- “Read and Write Japanese Scripts” I bought this when I was first starting to enter the world of Kanji. Kanji can seem really daunting. This book isn’t one I’d recommend to learn Kanji, but it does explain where Kanji came from, radicals and tips to remembering how to write them. I would say, look at my other kanji reference books if you want a better recommendation.
- “Dirty Japanese” This is just a book for fun! I’d definitely say you need to be mature for some of the words and phrases in this book, but it does teach some slang that I think is important to know if you hear something you’re not sure of.
- “Lonely Planet Japanese Phrasebook” Not a book for seriously studying. This is something I would recommend to somebody vacationing in Japan.
- “Berlitz Japanese and Korean Dictionaries” Great size, cheap, and there is a English section as well. I highly recommend these dictionaries! If you know how something sounds you can look it up too.
- “Common Japanese Collocations” LOVE LOVE LOVE. This is the best purchase I’ve ever made, far and wide. Its full of examples, common word pairings, and colloquial speech. This will help your fluency so much. I’m STILL Learning from this book.
- “Learning Japanese Hiragana and Katakana” If you are a beginner and don’t know where to start, buy a Hiragana and Katakana book. You need the Kana basis if you want to be able to read textbooks and begin your Japanese Learning Journey! 🙂 Its a great feeling to read Kana.
- “Making Out in Korean” Another fun book, it has mature themes and phrases that are funny!
- “Genki 1 & 2 Textbooks and Workbooks” I recommend this series, even though I think it moves a bit too fast for learners, it forces you to move quickly. Lots of examples, pictures and reading practice. However, I wish the dialogues were longer. I am currently using this in my University Classes. Next semester, I start Genki 2. I can vouch for Genki 1 though. Its a great place to start!
- “Vampire Knight Japanese Version Manga” I’m currently going through these and writing all the words I don’t know down. There are lots of level N1 Kanji in this, so its really challenging me, which is good. If you like vampire stories, know your kana, and have a dictionary (electronic or paper, or through an app) its fun to go through and learn the meanings of all the sentences.
- “Popteen Magazine” I am constantly impressed by Japanese advertisements. The ads blend into the magazine, and its packed full of images, cute style, etc. I can’t read all the kanji, but its great practice and I can keep up with Cute Styles.
- “Integrated Korean Beginner 1” Love this series. I’m still a very basic beginner, but I already love it. Lots of examples, and charts to help you learn the Hangeul. The Workbook works in conjunction with the textbook. I LOVE THAT! I recommend this to everyone.
- “Shadowing” I love this, I need to put the CD in my car and practice while I drive. It really forces you to listen and helps your pronunciation immensely ! You sound a lot better if you copy real speakers.
- “Christmas Carol” This book is a little too hard for me right now, but I’m determined to be able to read it by Christmas time. I can read it all, but there are so many words, after about an hour my brain is fried. So I take it slowly.
Well, I think thats all the books I showed in the video. If you are using any of these materials too, let me know what YOU think of them! I’d love to see your book collection too, so if you have a video of your language learning books send me a link!
Thanks for reading!