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7 Reviews
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars best of the bunch!
First of all, depsite the details on the Amazon page, this is not the old Bayraktaroglu edition but a completely different book by Backus and Aarssen. I've worked all the way through it and I think it's excellent. Good grammar explanations and lively interesting dialogues. As for the girlfriend of one of the other reviewers saying the Turkish was wrong - well, I saw that...
Published on 20 Jan 2004

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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just another Turkish language book.
I'm reasonably happy with this book but I think it's just another run of the mill language text. I did find a mistake in an early dialogue but this should be obvious to anybody who is paying attention. Other than that this book looks like it is well put together. The level of detail as far as grammar is concerned cannot be compared to that of Hugo's Turkish in 3 Months...
Published on 8 Dec 2000 by fife_campbell


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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just another Turkish language book., 8 Dec 2000
I'm reasonably happy with this book but I think it's just another run of the mill language text. I did find a mistake in an early dialogue but this should be obvious to anybody who is paying attention. Other than that this book looks like it is well put together. The level of detail as far as grammar is concerned cannot be compared to that of Hugo's Turkish in 3 Months and the level of colloquial phrases and forms cannot be compared to that of the previous version of Colloquial Turkish. I think this book makes a nice compromise. I think some readers might have a bit of trouble with this book. Many, as yet unexplained, grammar forms are used in example sentences and the reader has to wait until quite a bit later in the book before they can understand the whole sentence. This means you would have to do alot of guessing or just ignore whole chunks of these example sentences. Maybe there is some pedagogical reason for this. I also think this book was written with a lack of imagination. I've seen grammar points explained graphically in other books (Teach Yourself Turkish is one) and it really helped me with some points, e.g. words for location and direction. None of that here.
To sum up, I give it three stars cause it's pretty average but it did have some things that were new to me and quite useful.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars best of the bunch!, 20 Jan 2004
By A Customer
First of all, depsite the details on the Amazon page, this is not the old Bayraktaroglu edition but a completely different book by Backus and Aarssen. I've worked all the way through it and I think it's excellent. Good grammar explanations and lively interesting dialogues. As for the girlfriend of one of the other reviewers saying the Turkish was wrong - well, I saw that and checked with several Turkish friends of my own, all of whom gave it the all clear. So maybe it's a dialect thing. I can't believe the Turkish in a book like this wouldn't have been carefully checked before publication in any case, can you? By far the best self-teacher I've come across for this fascinating (and tricky!) language.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Could be better, 21 May 2002
By A Customer
This book gives a basic insight into Turkish, but it has a lot of faults. The dialogues are mostly very uninteresting and often downright silly. My Turkish girlfriend informs me that there are many mistakes in the examples given, both grammatical and lexical. As a language teacher myself, I always try, even when teaching grammar, to give examples that incorporate useful language, things that people might one day need to say. This book has many examples of phrases that no one would ever need to say (for example; 'In summer my grandfather takes his sheep to the meadow.' Am I really going to need to say that the next time I am in Turkey?).
The grammar explanations are reasonably clear, but a language course should really be focussing on useful, practical language.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No system, so make your own?, 22 Feb 2008
By 
Petter Brabec "Pete" (Norway) - See all my reviews
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The good is that you have to make effort to learn it, and I mean REALLY make an effort. The language is very different from indoeuropean ones, so don't wait any resemblance to what you know of other languages unless you're fluent in Hungarian or Finnish (agglutinative ones).
Turkish language builds up sentences very differently from how they are translated to English. You can't follow...Here lies also the core for my sigh. Yes, the dialogues can be silly, but I want to know WHAT I'm saying when training. The book seems to lack pedagogical system for how to learn this difficult language. This book is put together in a very haphazardous way. I don't want to read, you'll get to it, it'll be natural for you in no time etc. I want to know how am I to express correctly what I want to say and I want to understand why! Clear system for gradual introduction to the logic of the language would be much better.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not for the easily scared and a bit obscure!, 8 Aug 2003
By A Customer
I bought this book eager to learn Turkish. After two days I gave up and sent it back. This first exercise is okay but then it gets complicated very quickly, with lots of new vocab introduced quickly and without warning. There are not enough exercises to test yourself and the grammar structure is not explained until much later in the book. Some of the conversations are quite obscure and I found myself having to learn words that I would never use on a short visit to Turkey. It is not very encouaging for the beginer however it may be more suitable to a confident improver.
After returning this book, I purchased the Linguaphone PDQ pack which is much simpler and easier, and is also very encouraging. after 3 weeks with PDQ i can hold short conversations with confidence!
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Reasonable book, almost useless audio, 16 Feb 2010
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The recorded dialogues are for the most part so slowed down and the flow of the language is so unnaturally broken up that they are pretty much useless. If the people responsible had only used audio editing software to adjust the speed without distorting the rythyms this would have been quicker and easier to produce and much more useful.
The same criticism applies to other Colloquial books I ve tried (Mongolian, Hungarian)so it seems to be a fault with the commissioning editors rather than the authors.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the usual standard, 17 July 2011
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As a rule when starting to learn a new language I start with the Routledge series, as I have come to expect high levels of scholarship from them. This book disappoints on a number of accounts.

The main complaint is that the presentation of the grammar is awful. For a language as distant from English as Turkish, a systematic presentation of the grammar is indispensable. Otherwise, the student is simply going to get lost (and probably give up). Here the grammar presentation is by small, unrelated, distributed points with few tables and no illustrations. The dialogues are to some degree related to nearby language points, but often new, unexplained material is introduced. This is no good in a book for beginners. The dialogues are also particularly dry.

I have some experience with language learning and by chapter four I was so frustrated that I bought the 'Complete Turkish' book (which I do not regret).

The other complaint is the use of English. There is too much English waffle in this book. It is not possible to learn Turkish by reading English. I ignore large parts of this book. I use the Complete Turkish book for my grammar.

The reason I give 3 stars rather than one, is that the dialogues provide useful listening practice, there is some new vocabulary, it covers some things not in the Complete Turkish course and has translation exercises, which the Complete Turkish does not have.

So, you may still want to buy this course, but certainly don't start here. Not unless you are some linguistic savant.

Teach Yourself Complete Turkish (TY Complete Courses)
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Colloquial Turkish: The Complete Course for Beginners (Colloquial Series)
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