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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thorough grounding in Swedish
As a English/Dutch speaker trying to learn my 3rd language I must say that this is the best language book that I have ever come across. Admittedly the level starts high and progresses quickly but I was grateful not to spend the first 4 chapters learning to say 'My name is... I am 26... & Where is the museum?...' IMHO if you want to learn a new language then there is no...
Published on 16 Nov 2004 by Christopher Dury

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18 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Rare Disappointment
Hitherto I have been a great fan of the "Colloquial" series and have not hesitated to recommend them to other people, regardless of the language in question. This book has caused to me to think again. I don't like to speaking badly of a book, but this is a rare disappointment in this language series. I came to it fresh from "Colloquial Norwegian", which is superb, far...
Published on 11 Sep 2002


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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thorough grounding in Swedish, 16 Nov 2004
As a English/Dutch speaker trying to learn my 3rd language I must say that this is the best language book that I have ever come across. Admittedly the level starts high and progresses quickly but I was grateful not to spend the first 4 chapters learning to say 'My name is... I am 26... & Where is the museum?...' IMHO if you want to learn a new language then there is no quick way (like so many books promise) and this book explains grammar in a clear logical way which will keep you on the right track for the remainder of your Swedish speaking life. This is no phrase book, so if your just on holiday there for a few days then this is not for you. However if you seriously want to be able to speak Swedish and have a thorough grounding in the language then I couldn't recommend this book highly enough. (I finished the book 1 year ago and now consider myself to be pretty fluent).
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for people with an existing second language, 20 Mar 2004
By 
Jim Dowling (irlanda) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Colloquial Swedish (Colloquial Series) (Paperback)
This book covers a lot of ground quickly - after the prologue i felt i could pronounce most swedish sounds and grasp good chunks of the grammar (i already have german which helps).
Compared to other colloquial books, there's about twice as much in this as in the spanish/italian/french books. This is great, as there ain't many useful swedish books out there for beginners.
One thing - if you want to learn swedish using this book, don't skip ahead. Do each page over and over until it sinks in. It'll take time, but it's worth it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Colloquial Swedish, 10 Jan 2011
I'm currently about a third of the way through this book and CD set. It's generally quite good. It has a nice balance of vocabulary, grammar, reading texts, and exercises for you do to along the way (with the answers in the back). And of course, the audio CDs are very helpful for pronunciation (which is a 'must' with Swedish). It does move along at quite a fast pace, so the complete beginner may find it quite challenging. I already knew a fair amount of Swedish vocabulary before I started so this wasn't too much of a problem for me.

On the downside, it is full of mistakes, and clearly hasn't been proof read before going to publication. For example, in the answer section at the back, it states that the word for 'violin' is 'viol' (wrong) when throughout the book it refers to violin as 'fiol' (correct). On the audio CD, the speaker states the price of a train ticket as "tvahundranittiotre" when in the book it's "etthundranittiotre". Then on page 67, it notes 'Flicka' as meaning 'The girl' when actually 'Flickan' means 'The girl'. These may seem like little errors, but they add up and can become confusing and rather irritating. There are probably loads more that I haven't noticed and I'm only a third of the way through!

This is a great shame, because were it not for this sloppiness, I think this would be a very solid and proficient introductory guide to Swedish. Despite the mistakes, I'd still say it was worth the buy as I believe it's still better than the 'Teach Yourself Swedish' package.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for quick learners, 14 Aug 2009
This book is not for the fainthearted nor for those who want to spend a few weeks learning how to say "My name is ..." and "Where is the train station?" It starts out with those beginning sentences but QUICKLY moves to real Swedish. Those who just want travellers phrases would probably be happier with a different book. For people who already know some Swedish or who simply can deal with the fast pace, it is the best book I've found. I think too much emphasis is placed on getting the pronunciation exactly right in the beginning, but I intend to skip over most of that content my first time through the book and get back to it the second time around.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb Swedish course, 10 Jun 2002
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I bought this book as a complete beginner to Swedish and was delighted with the swift progress I made.
This is mainly due to the fact that the book goes at quite a fast pace, and introduces a large amount of vocabulary in a short space of time.
The audio tapes are recorded by native speakers, who also seem to make very little concession to the fact that they are being listened to by learners. This is good, because it's just the same as in real life.
All in all, I'd thoroughly recommend buying this book, especially with the cassettes.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect!, 1 April 2011
This book is amazing. It covers EVERYTHING you need to be able to get around and converse at an average level.

I highly recommend it!

Tack så mycket COLLOQUIAL SWEDISH
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5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best, 23 Jun 2014
Of all the language courses that I have tried this is still by far the best. Really easy to use and bite size information
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18 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Rare Disappointment, 11 Sep 2002
By A Customer
Hitherto I have been a great fan of the "Colloquial" series and have not hesitated to recommend them to other people, regardless of the language in question. This book has caused to me to think again. I don't like to speaking badly of a book, but this is a rare disappointment in this language series. I came to it fresh from "Colloquial Norwegian", which is superb, far better than "TY Norwegian" and "Norwegian in 3 Months". I learnt Norwegian really quickly and learnt lots of words as well. I hoped this book would be similar, but not so. It is very dense, which makes it heavy going and also difficult to move backward and forwards to find things you wish to refer to. Important points are explained very briefly or hardly at all. The index is very poor. I campared it with the index for "Colloquial Norwegian". They are almost the same length, but the Norwegian one is much more useful. Part of the problem is the concentration on grammar both in the text and in the index (though it fairness, one can find "my name is.." -- if you look hard enough), but one is better off using a proper primer for grammar. I note the authors used this book in a class situation. Perhaps in a class with a teacher to explain things, this book may work well enough, but for a self-learner (for which the "Colloquial" series is usually well-suited) this book is hard work. There are also too many characters knocking around (the Norwegian book uses one family) and the Swedish text is difficult to read (it is rather blurred, particularly in the glossary).
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What were the publishers thinking?, 5 Sep 2007
We bought this book in preparation for a short holiday to Sweden, interested to have something a bit higher and to gain more insight into the way the language works than you would gain from a phrasebook.

On the positive side, the book has a strong focus on pronunciation. However, you will gain limited essential vocabulary for everyday situations. We thought it was laughable that the word for "metal workers' union" had cropped up twice before we could even say "Good morning", ask for and receive directions, order food, know basic numbers, etc. etc. etc. (you get the picture).

It's difficult to pick up basic vocabulary from the CDs. You are asked to repeat back lots of words for pronunciation (metal workers' union; religion, institution, a variety of personal names and place names), without worrying about the meaning, but not asked to repeat back anything from the dialogues featured, so don't expect much progress from these.

On the CD, lots of passages are read aloud as in the book, many without pause or any explanation or afterword, in constrast to other volumes in the series, where the speaker explains in English, invites you in English to make certain responses (as given in passages).

We previously bought the Prague volume, and thought that the selection of material in that course was a bit eclectic and eccentric. This is even more the case in this book, which contains dialogues on moving in with someone in Sweden and buying a sofa (surely by the point you were moving in with someone, you'd have got past the language course stage?).

All in all, better for those with lots of time and interest, but no interest in basic conversational Swedish.
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10 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars How to put you off learning languages, 11 April 2005
By A Customer
Perhaps I had unrealistic expectations, having had previous success with Michel Thomas titles in French and Italian, but this book and DVD are really hard going. It starts with "this is the Swedish alphabet" and moves quickly on to "repeat these 84 vowel sounds". By the time it gets to some dialogue you are straight in at the deep end, and unlike one of the other reviewers I would quite like to know how to say "how are you?". After two 30 minute sessions, during which I fell asleep twice and retained about three words, I have given up. Definitely not for beginners, nor possibly anyone with a brain rather than a microprocessor in their head.
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Colloquial Swedish (Colloquial Series)
Colloquial Swedish (Colloquial Series) by Gunilla Serin (Paperback - 16 Oct 2003)
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