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Kanji in Mangaland: Volume 1: Basic Kanji Course Through Manga: 1 (Kanji in Mangaland) Paperback – 16 Nov 2007


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Kanji in Mangaland: Volume 1: Basic Kanji Course Through Manga: 1 (Kanji in Mangaland) + Japanese in Mangaland: Basic to Intermediate Level (Japanese in Mangaland)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Japan Publications Trading Company; Bilingual edition (16 Nov. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4889962212
  • ISBN-13: 978-4889962215
  • Product Dimensions: 25.9 x 1.3 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 831,652 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. L on 22 Nov. 2011
I've been self-teaching myself Japanese for a few years now and I'm fluent in Hiragana and Katakana and can understand some basic grammar/convos etc so I wanted to start teaching myself Kanji and thought this book would be a fun way to learn.

I wouldn't say I'm disappointed but I would say that I seriously underestimated the level you need to be to study this book, this book is by no means for a beginner learning Japanese for the first time but more a book to compliment your Japanese study in general.

I was also hoping I would be able to read the manga cartoon after I had studied the first few kanji's as the book suggests but I couldn't, the text is very advanced for me and includes lots of other kanji's not already studied, there is explanations for them in simpler kana but unless you are good at Japanese in general you won't have a clue what's going on other than from the pictures and something to do with on top and underneath lol (exercise1)

The questions too are hard and you will need to memorise everything, and I mean everything before answering them. You won't be able to simply remember the kanji character, you will need to learn how it translates into spoken language, learn the brush strokes, learn all the different contexts and how their spoken for each instance the kanji can be found in and so much more before answering the questions.

This book is by no means a quick way to learn, you will need to study hard and have a good memory from day 1 so don't expect results straight away! I also find the ways of remembering the characters really odd but at least this makes you remember them! I'm still haunted by spiders in hats... you'll see.

All in all I would recommend this book for someone studying Japanese in general but as a book on its own for a beginner I would say leave it for now until you have mastered the kanas and some basic grammar/Japanese language etc first.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 10 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Vitamin-C for Studying Kanji 1 Jan. 2008
By Otto Yuen - Published on Amazon.com
This book is a supplement for people who want to study kanji in addition to their Japanese text books. Kanji in Mangaland Volume I covers around 240 kanji, the Kyoiku kanji taught in the first two years of elementary school in Japan, and also the kanji for Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) level 3 & 4. Unlike other kanji studying materials such as Kanji flashcard, this book provides more than kunyomi, onyomi, and a list of jukugo (compound words). It illustrates the kanji stroke ordering sequence, uses a picture representing the kanji to help reader's memorization, and demonstrates the usage of different kanji via manga examples. The best part of the book is the history overview of where and how the kanji got imported to Japan and the influence on the Japanese language phonetic symbols: Katakana & Hiragana. However, few manga dialogs have some kanji that never been covered in the book, this may cause confusion to the readers. Overall, like Vitamin-C to your body, this book is a pretty good supplement to your Kanji studying.

(Reviewed by Otto Yuen, 01-Jan-2008)
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
I am looking forward the complete serie 15 Nov. 2007
By pietro merletti - Published on Amazon.com
That's by far the best method of learning Kanji I ever met.
It combines traditional carving-by repeat method with visual method.
You have to write a lot in order to master Kanji, but there is no other way, I am afraid, to master Japanese writing and, most important of it, not to forget it the day after.
Drawings are wonderful, and even if it's aimed to teen-agers, it's good for elderly ( like me, fori instance) too.
I hope to be able to purchase the entire serie as quick as possible.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Book is not bad but not enough by itself to learn kanji. 27 April 2010
By naware - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
You can't use this book by itself to learn kanji because there aren't enough practice problems to get enough repeated exposure to absorb the kanji. But this book would be a good supplement to something else.

The other thing you would need is something that would give you repeated exposure to the kanji. Some people use flashcards or Anki programs or jrpg. I am using jrpg, which is a homebrewed rpg game. It isn't very sophisticated but it is a good learning tool.

I also used it with the nintendo game Kanji Kakitorikun (the first one not the second) and that worked out very well for me. Using Kakitorikun together with this series, I find I have really good retention of the on-yomi and kun-yomi readings and I am now familiar with many common compounds.

The first Kakitorikun is ordered by grade level. The second version of kakitorikun is not. You can tell them apart because the front cover of the first game has a smaller bird than the second one. Kanji in Mangaland is also ordered by grade level. This makes it easy to use Kakitorikun 1 together with Kanji in Mangaland because you can do each grade level of this book at the same time that you do the matching grade level in the nintendo game. So far I have done first and second grades and I am almost done with third grade. It is slow going but worth it because by methodically going through each level, I am finding that these kanji seem second nature to me when I see them. I easily write them, too. But that is because of Kakitorikun not because of Kanji in Mangaland.

Volume one of Kanji in Mangaland covers the Japanese learned in the first and second grades in Japan. There are 240 in this book.

Volume two covers the third and fourth grade kanji. Something around 400.

Volume three has not been released, yet. It seems that it is planned to be released in the first half of 2011. Volume three will cover fifth and sixth grade kanji--about 400.

The diacritics (that differentiate 'ho' from 'po' from 'bo') are really tiny so it can be hard to tell whether some characters are, for example, 'bo' vs. 'po' or 'ba' vs. 'pa.' I am nearsighted. So I take of my glasses and squint and then I can see which it is. But some people are going to need one of those reading magnifying glasses to see the difference. But you can buy one of those at Walgreens for under 5 bucks so no big deal. I don't think it could really be helped actually because if the characters would have been made larger then all of the on and kun-yomi readings wouldn't have fit as nicely on each page. So just buy a magnifying glass and the problem is solved.

Each chapter has a one page cartoon at the end of it. The cartoons are really stupid. I don't enjoy the cartoons. Not only are the cartoons stupid but they don't make enough use of the characters introduced in the chapter(s). But there is no reason that you need to use the cartoons. I just ignore them.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Could have been better 7 Sept. 2011
By Joyce Ronquillo - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I like the illustrations of the kanji in that they are easy to follow stroke order and count and there are examples of alternate ways the kanji can look and the usual example words. I'm not big on someone else's idea of a visual mnemonic but I'm sure it will suit some people. However, this is supposed to help learn kanji through examples pulled from manga. I'm not convinced these are real manga but the examples are there. The handwritten font style makes reading the kanji difficult and stroke count almost impossible. This shouldn't be a problem since there are furigana to help. I also have Japanese in Mangaland and it has one difference that makes it much better IMO than Kanji in Mangaland. In Japanese in Mangaland the examples are transcribed into hiragana, then translated literally so you see what the word actually is, then translated into common English. In Kanji in Mangaland, the manga examples are translated at the end of the chapter but there is no literal translation so the reader must tease out the stroke order or look up the hiragana in a dictionary to see what the kanji actually means in that context. I have two decent paper dictionaries and still have more trouble than I should translating the example sentence for myself. This makes the manga portion of the book practically useless.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
It really helps me and I love this book!!! 8 Oct. 2011
By kanji_maniac - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
From the first day that I read this book, I can not help but to continually reading it. At last I found the book to really help me in learning Kanji without getting me bored. I will really buy the 2nd series once I have finished and mastered volume 1. And I hope to see the release of the 3rd volume soon. I love it and I will give 5 stars to it. However, please improve your proofreading. Thanks.
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