The main section is an alphabetical listing of various
grammatical features such as particles, auxillary verbs
and adjectives, useful constructions, key words and phrases,
and so on. Each entry comes with detailed notes and examples
on how to use the grammar point, how not to use it, how it
compares with other features with similar meanings, etc. All
the example sentences are written in both Japanese and romaji.
And don't be misled by the word 'Basic' in the title. There
is a plenty in this book to make it interesting to an intermediate
student. But when you find you need something more, there is
an 'Intermediate' companion volume by the same authors.
Aside from main dictionary section the book contains a useful
explanation of many grammatical terms that may not be familiar
to some students, and a long section on the general features of
Japanese grammar, such as word order.
There are also a number of quite
useful appendices - perhaps the most useful shows the rules
behind the sound mutations of numerals + counters, which
are pretty daunting for the beginner. An English index allows you
to find the Japanese equivalent of an English construction.
I thoroughly recommend this book to all serious students of
It is an excellent learning guide and reference for basic and intermediate level.
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