Yaaay… new Korean books from Japan!
It’s my first order on a Japanese online store called “honto” (http://honto.jp). They’ve got all kinds of Japanese books, CD, etc. and they ship internationally. No additional service charge at all, and you only have to pay for the book price and the real shipping fee (the options are EMS, airmail, or SAL). They will tell you the shipping fee via e-mail after they pack your order.
I chose airmail (cost me 1,450 yen for shipping to Indonesia), and my order arrived on day 10th. Not bad. I’m very satisfied.
The postman didn’t ask for any fee. (He charged me Rp 3,000 the last time). So, thank you, Mr. Postman.
Some (most?) language learners say that explanation in a language other than the target language is distracting. According to them, it’s better to have native speakers teach you entirely in the target language, and read books in the target language only. But I strongly disagree.
I learnt Japanese in a language school, and I always had difficulty grasping the new concept explained to me in Japanese by native teachers. All, yes, all my foreigner friends felt the same way, we complained to each other, we discussed and made a lot of “guessing” of what the teachers said, and then, guess what we did, we bought Japanese grammar books written in English, in a language we could understand.
So I like having a new concept explained to me in a language I can understand, and then after I really really get it, I will memorize the concept in its original language, which is Korean, without translating it into any other language in my head.
The final goal in language learning is understanding the language without translating it to any other language. So eventually, I want to be able to understand Korean, in Korean. (I can do that now with short sentences). But that will only come after many many hours of learning. I believe the ability to understand Korean ‘in Korean’ will come naturally, like I said, after many many hours of learning. No need to rush. I just need to be patient and trust the process. Well, I don’t need to be patient because I’m having fun.
I don’t believe grammar explanation which is not entirely in Korean is distracting. I don’t believe pronounciation guide (romanization) is a distracting. I don’t believe audio CD with translation is distracting. I think they’re helpful.
At my level now, after 1 year of learning, I can read and comprehend explanation in Korean, too, but I want my learning to stay fun and less painful so I keep learning Korean using books written in Japanese. Besides, Japan’s got the best books designed for self-learners.
Here’s the first book:
今井 久美雄（著）, 金 妍廷 （著）, 李 知宣（著）
This one is a grammar book explaining about 184 sentence patterns “so you can sound more like native”. It’s meant for intermediate and advanced learners. Audio CD included (read in natural speed). I’ve just started learning from TOPIK Advanced level (I downloaded the problems and answer key from the internet) and I noticed that this book also explains about the grammar tested in TOPIK.
The composition of the book is simple. Very short grammar explanation on the upper left side, and then 3 kind of conversations using the expression (2 speakers speaking in casual language, 1 using casual tone and 1 using honorific tone, and both speakers using honorific). I did mention that this book came with 2 CDs, right?
And the 2nd book:
チョ ヒチョル （著）
This one is a dictionary of Korean colloquial expressions that are not explained on regular dictionaries. It’s not that thick, a little too pricey at 2520 yen (no audio CD), and not very complete. Most of the entries actually can be found in Naver dictionary. For explanation on slang words, nothing beats the internet, of course. But I think it will be very cool if I can memorize all the words in it. (I probably will, just give me 5 years. Yeah, hwaiting, me!)
So there’s the expression written in hangul, the direct translation, the real meaning, and 1 sample sentence each, with translation. And there’s a little red pepper icon that tells you the ‘rudeness level’ of the expression. This one is also not for beginners.
Great books. I’m so happy.
- Reply from honto.jp (koreanvitamin.wordpress.com)