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10 Reviews
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good, interesting and stimulating read
My tutor bought this book and gave me the first poem (the famous Goethe Wanderer's Nachtlied) to translate to open up one of my lessons. I've spent quite a bit of time around German-speakers but not very much time learning it formally, and am about 6 months in to my lessons. I have quite a good passive knowledge or German, therefore, but am not quite so good at the spoken...
Published on 25 July 2011 by Mr Marc Whitmore

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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars NOT for beginners...
That's true. This book is not for beginners!! It's a good introduction into real German literature & poetry but only for upper-intermediate language users. So the title is VERY misleading...

There is on more important point to mention - the book was prepared half a century ago. The selection of texts you will find inside is not really representative of modern...
Published on 8 April 2010 by P. Szczepaniak


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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars NOT for beginners..., 8 April 2010
By 
P. Szczepaniak (Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
That's true. This book is not for beginners!! It's a good introduction into real German literature & poetry but only for upper-intermediate language users. So the title is VERY misleading...

There is on more important point to mention - the book was prepared half a century ago. The selection of texts you will find inside is not really representative of modern German language so keep it in mind while buying!!

I found it quite a challenge but ultimately enjoyed some parts of this book (especially biographical texts about famous Germans and a very interesting and concise introduction to German philosophy).
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good, interesting and stimulating read, 25 July 2011
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
My tutor bought this book and gave me the first poem (the famous Goethe Wanderer's Nachtlied) to translate to open up one of my lessons. I've spent quite a bit of time around German-speakers but not very much time learning it formally, and am about 6 months in to my lessons. I have quite a good passive knowledge or German, therefore, but am not quite so good at the spoken or written - maybe A1/A2 in Euro Framework terms. I asked if she thought I should buy the book, and she was equivocal.
Anyway, I did, and I am finding it a joy. Admittedly there are texts in here which I can't translate or which are simply (at the moment) way to long for me to get through. However the mix of poems, quotations from famous Germans, history of individuals or areas, culture and so on is really fascinating. The book is old (first published in 1964) - so there is an article about the split between East and West Germany - but that in and of itself is fascinating.
So I have to completely disagree, respectfully, with the other reviewers. If you are bored of only having to tackle the usual diet of artificial situations that most foreign language courses include, then this book is a welcome antidote. I now know the German for Phoenix, have a better understanding of Bach, can quote the odd line of Goethe, and was able to have a detailed conversation with a German friend of mine (not in German, yet!) about the difference between Schritte and Tritt using the first couple of poems in the book.
Clearly, not for everyone, but don't write the book of just yet. I've found it very enjoyable!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "... etwas verehren, das über uns ist ...", 9 Aug 2011
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
I have been learning german for about 7 years now and this book is perhaps my favourite learning resource of all due, I would say, to the depth of knowledge the editor has of german culture and literature which is very impressive and in this book he shares with us his expertise on the subject and introduces the reader to the work of various german writers, poets and philosophers, starting with such eighteenth century greats as Goethe, Schiller and Lessing and including short stories, poems and quotations by nineteenth and twentieth century writers as well such as Ludwig Börne, Hermann Hesse, Peter Rosegger, Heinrich Heine and Otto Ludwig to name a few, as well as including a number of essays on various subjects all of which I found very interesting (particularly `Über deutscher Sprache and `Gefahren des Übersetzungs'), and in reading and re-reading this book many times I feel I have learned a lot of new vocabulary. Another plus point is that the book is dual language which saves time having to look things up in a dictionary. I should mention however - and this has already been pointed out in other reviews - that it is not a book for beginners, I would say you should be at level B1 minimum in order to get the most out of this book and also it is rather an old book, first published in the 1960's and so the essays on german society are somewhat out of date (but well written and insightful nonetheless). The rest of the content, however, is timeless and provides us with "eine goldene Zeit, die nicht rostet" and I would thoroughly recommend it to all german learners who are at the appropriate level.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very difficult, not for beginners, 8 Mar 2009
This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
This is not a beginners book. It is beyond B2.
I cannot understand what is in the mind of whoever decided the title
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful., 26 Dec 2013
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E. Salzen - See all my reviews
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
Useful for someone learning German on their own, at least for reading and developing vocabulary. This type of book is in general useful.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 9 May 2014
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Mrs (Aberdeen, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
For those learning the language for the first time I would recommend this book. It helps spelling as well as considering grammar in written format.
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3.0 out of 5 stars First German Reader, 25 Mar 2013
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
It's OK, I am trying to learn German and have been trying to get simple books to read, this is OK but possible not my cup of tea.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A good way of learning German, 9 Feb 2013
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
I bought this for my son who is just starting to learn German as It should give him a wider vocabulary I am sure he will find it useful.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard and death-obsessed, 31 Jan 2012
This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
What the heck? Almost every non-factual piece of writing in this book is something about the shortness of life, the misery of ageing and the inevitability of death. Is it intended to make German culture unappealing? Other than that it's useful enough as a learning tool, but be warned if you're prone to depression.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too old fashioned, 20 Feb 2013
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This review is from: First German Reader: A Beginner's Dual-language Book (Dover Dual Language German) (Paperback)
An excellent idea but because most of the German material is from classic authors such as Goethe much of the German language used is old fashioned or employs words not in everyday modern use, especially in the poems. Not an ideal means of learning contemporary German I'm afraid.
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