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Breaking Out of Beginner's Spanish
 
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Breaking Out of Beginner's Spanish [Format Kindle]

Joseph J. Keenan

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Descriptions du produit

Présentation de l'éditeur

Many language books are boring—this one is not. Written by a native English speaker who learned Spanish the hard way—by trying to talk to Spanish-speaking people—it offers English speakers with a basic knowledge of Spanish hundreds of tips for using the language more fluently and colloquially, with fewer obvious "gringo" errors.


Writing with humor, common sense, and a minimum of jargon, Joseph Keenan covers everything from pronunciation, verb usage, and common grammatical mistakes to the subtleties of addressing other people, "trickster" words that look alike in both languages, inadvertent obscenities, and intentional swearing. He guides readers through the set phrases and idiomatic expressions that pepper the native speaker's conversation and provides a valuable introduction to the most widely used Spanish slang.


With this book, both students in school and adult learners who never want to see another classroom can rapidly improve their speaking ability. Breaking Out of Beginner's Spanish will be an essential aid in passing the supreme language test-communicating fluently with native speakers.


Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2460 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 215 pages
  • Editeur : Univ of Texas Pr; Édition : 1 (30 novembre 1993)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B0047BJ2UC
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°183.473 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5  232 commentaires
704 internautes sur 708 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This book is deserving of about 10 stars! 5 décembre 1999
Par amy wilds fuller - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
As a Spanish major who has also spent several summers in Mexico, I have read pretty much every Spanish text I have come across. In all that reading, I have never found another Spanish book that even comes close to this one (in accuracy, helpfulness, readability, and other key areas).
Keenan does an excellent job of picking out the specific Spanish words and phrases that cause English speakers the most problems. I have several friends who are also studying Spanish. It seems like 9 times out of 10 when they ask me a question, it is an issue that was covered in "Breaking out.."
This book was written with the reader's attention span in mind. Imagine: a Spanish text that is actually enjoyable to read! I read this book cover-to-cover at least once a year. Every time I glean some new pointer that I can implement in my constant quest to sound like less of a gringa.
Sections include a discussion of the subjunctive, a chapter on cursing (!), cultural info, general language learning tips, useful verbs to add to your repertoire, and discussion of the evolution of the Spanish language. To me, the most helpful sections were those dealing with word choice: a couple of chapters that deal with stuff like "what is the difference between regresar, volver, devolver, etc.?"
If you have a general grasp of the basics in Spanish but feel like your learning has kind of reached a plateau, this book is an excellent resource for learning how to get your Spanish to the next level.
The only negative I can think of is that the book is not indexed. As a result, after reading the book initially, when you find yourself with a question that you know was answered somewhere in the book (a frequent ocurrence), it sometimes takes a moment to flip through the book and find the exact paragraph where he talked about it.
If I could only have one Spanish book, it would be this one. I would even choose it over 501 verbs and probably even my dictionary.
208 internautes sur 209 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Not so much a language book as a guide into another culture 1 avril 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
You may as well be trying to learn Latin with most Spanish books. Not only are they dry and boring, they are absolutely lifeless! Keenan presents Spanish as a living language, full of real life examples and situations (and I don't mean asking the maid in your hotel room for more towels!) I have read this book until the pages have fallen out. Take it from someone who followed Keenan's advice, went to Mexico, and started talking to the locals - you will never find a more helpful resource for your sojourn. The section on invectives and obcenities is worth the price of admission. You may never have an inclination to use any of these words, but I guarantee you it is very, very useful knowing when they are being used toward you. Finally, never have I encountered a Spanish language book which enlightens one as to why everything in Spanish is reversed, e.g. blanca y negra for black and white. Keenan's wonderful book helps you get inside the Spanish speaker's mind and world to the extent that you might just realize it is the English speaker that has everything backwards.
327 internautes sur 337 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent but not for amateurs... 16 janvier 2002
Par Michael Dickson - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
I moved to Mexico two years ago and enrolled in a language school right off the bat. I also bought this book. After reading it, I thought it was helpful, but not excessively so because I didn't quite "get" everything it was trying to tell me. I stuck it on the bookshelf.

Now, two years later, I'm going through it again and discovering a virtual gold mine of information. My point being: Take the book's title seriously. It is a book for people firmly at the intermediate level or above. For these people, it answers a ton of things that have proved baffling. For these people, the book is a gem. If you are departing the beginner stage, this stupendous book will answer lots of those things you've been scratching your head over. Immensely valuable.

But don't buy it for Spanish 101.
202 internautes sur 213 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Good, but not perfect 17 février 2002
Par "fredfresno" - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I would have given this book 4 stars, but with all the 5-star reviews one needs to take another off to get across the point that this book is not perfect. Given all the justifiable good things everyone says about this book, it's worth mentioning a shortcoming and making some contrarian points.
First, the LACK OF AN INDEX is a BIG SHORTCOMING. This is a reference book written by a journalist, with an entertaining style and interesting anecdotes and verbal illustrations. It's therefore easy to forget that it is, first and foremost, a reference book. After my first quick read through this book I recall wanting to check back on a fine distinction between a couple of similar verbs (I don't remember now which ones). They might have been in chapter 7, "Sixty-four Verbs", or in chapter 11, "Which is Which". I couldn't find what I was looking for by skimming, and an index would have been greatly appreciated.
Second, a number of reviewers keep emphasizing that this book is for intermediate or advanced speakers. If you're interested in this book, I wouldn't let that stop you from getting it. I've been seriously attempting to learn Spanish for about a year and a half. From my perspective, that of having been a university student a long time ago in a place far, far away, terms like "beginner" and "intermediate" are of more use to academic bureaucrats than to teachers and learners. I consider the community college courses I've taken have been auxiliary rather than primary means of learning Spanish. A few months ago I was in Bogota for a week and surprised myself with how well I was able to communicate with the locals. More recently here at home in California I sat in on a reading course in which most of the students were, to some extent, native speakers. I had the realization that I still sound VERY awkward trying to speak Spanish (or more accurately, trying to read it aloud to a group at conversational speed), and that there's a reason that bilingual speaker (there are more of them in California than Colombia) tend to switch me back to English. From this perspective, some of the items in this book struck me as useful. My reaction to other items was "well, duh!" This book could have been quite useful to me 6 months or even a year ago. And the nice thing about a reference book is that it can sit on your shelf, ready for when the need for it arises.
The third "yeah, but..." this book does not offer magical solutions. Of course no reasonable person expects magical solutions, and the blurbs for this book do not explicitly promise them. Still, all hyper-positive reviews for this book could create very high expectations. In the introduction Keenan offers a few suggestions on picking up the language, but precedes this section with the warning: "...there's no magic formula or secret recipe to speed you on your way to fluency." That might be as good as any piece of advice in this book. It is, nonetheless, well worth having.
60 internautes sur 61 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great!!! 7 juin 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
If you've been studying Spanish courses and feel confident that you could ask where a hotel or restuarant is but do not feel that you could get into a real conversation with a native speaker, this book will help. It gives you a good way of looking at the subjunctive verb that other books would only confuse you with. Lots of everyday ways of saying things where conventional teaching aids give you ridged ways saying the same thing. If you want to sound like you know what you are saying then this book will help. It will help you stop saying "um" & "uh", and show you spanish stuble-words cause let's face we are all going to stammer reaching for the right word so why not sound a little more fluent doing so. The obscenity section is helpful, even if you don't want to curse(I don't) it is good to know if someone says something to you and there are words that are harmless in some Spanish speaking countries that are dangerous in other and you'd be wise to know the difference as to not offend anyone or embarrass yourself.
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