[Korean Textbook Review] NEW 스타일 한국어 의성어 · 의태어

안녕하세요. It’s Saturday again! Time flies.

I recently bought a new Korean textbook about Korean onomatopoeia, for foreigners. The title of the book is NEW 스타일 한국어 의성어 · 의태어, written by 한국어교육연구소, published by 동양 Books. The price is 8,500 won, not as expensive as other Korean textbooks. ISBN 9791157030415. 144 pages.

I think this book is a nice addition to my collection, and when I finish reading it, I might get other 2 books in the same series, “NEW 스타일 한국어 관용 표현” and “NEW 스타일 한국어 속담 · 한자성어.”

Cost me 150,000 rupiah.

Cost me about 150,000 rupiah including shipping fee.

Let’s take a closer look at hangul writings on the cover so you can see what you can get from this book.

Front cover.

Front cover

As always, there’s a ‘how to use this book’ page.

How To Use This Book

How To Use This Book

I already liked it from the moment I opened the book because the structure of the book is very simple and it has a lot of cute illustrations to help understand the terms.

Cute and looks easy to learn from.

Cute and looks easy to learn from.

From this book you can learn about 170 something onomatopoeic words, divided into 40 categories/functions, such as ‘부드러운 느낌’ (onomatopoeia to describe softness), ‘다양한 소리’ (various sounds), etc. which I think helpful in remembering them and usually you won’t get this from a dictionary.

List of Contents

List of Contents

The book is entirely in Korean, without English translation.

The explanation and sample sentence of each onomatopoeia is short and simple (love it!). Below, you can see that 머뭇머뭇 was on TOPIK 29th and 31st so you might want to make sure you remember this one if you’re taking TOPIK.

Simple explanation about onomatopoeia.

Simple explanation about onomatopoeia.

After each 5 categories, you will find exercise section like this,



consists of 3 types of questions: 1. fill in the blank,

Fill in the blank.

Fill in the blank.

2. pick the right one between 2 very similar words (because you might forget the difference between 끄덕끄덕 and 꾸벅꾸벅, for example),

Pick the right one.

Pick the right one.


3. connect 2 words with similar meaning.

Korean Onomatopoeia - Exercises 3

There is answer key at the back to check whether you answer correctly or not.

Then, there is ‘more usages in sentences’ section, in which you get 5 more sample sentences of each word, arranged in 가나다 order.

More usage in sentences.

More usage in sentences.

And at the last pages, you will find index in 가나다 order so you can also use it as dictionary.



The binding is just bad, it’s new, but the pages are already falling apart. Sigh.



Now I remember I learned 끄떡끄떡 from Super Junior’s song, “Bonamana”. And 끄덕끄덕 from M.I.B’s song “끄덕여줘”. And 꼬깃꼬깃 from 꽃을 파는 여자 by 젝시 (XXXY). I remember words easier if they’re used in K-pop lyrics.

The book doesn’t tell you about pronunciation changes. For example, 머뭇머뭇 is pronounced [머문머묻], but you won’t find it in the book. So… when in doubt, always check pronunciation on Naver Dictionary http://krdic.naver.com/.

The book uses simple and short sentences but sometimes it also uses advanced level words. The website of the publisher says this book is meant for basic level. I don’t think I’d want to read this book if I were a basic level learner, though. But maybe it’s just me. ###


7 thoughts on “[Korean Textbook Review] NEW 스타일 한국어 의성어 · 의태어

  1. Thank you so much for posting this review! I’ve encountered several onomatopoeias when reading Korean, and I find many of them quite puzzling so I’m pretty sure I need to buy this book! The fact that it is all in Korean makes it a nice challenge as well. 🙂


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  4. Thank you so much for introducing this book. I have difficulty learning the onomatopoeia. I only can remember them through Kpop songs. This book seems to be a great resource for learning onomatopoeia.


    • Thank you for commenting. I know what you mean. It was hard and boring for me before but now I can’t get enough of them. I don’t know why. It’s just the time for me to get interested, I guess. It’s really fun because once you learn them, they pop out everywhere.


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