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4.5 out of 5 stars37
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 20 January 2013
I bought the 2003 version of 'Hugo Dutch in 3 months', with CDs, some years back (around 2008) as I wanted to learn Dutch. This was my first Dutch learning material. I have now moved to the Netherlands (last 6 months), and have also completed a further course at a Dutch university language centre.

I would recommend the 'Hugo' course to anyone. The order of subject matter within course is devised to introduce Dutch pronunciation and then grammar a bit at a time - this does mean that the order of material is a little strange at times (do not expect to have mastered useful holiday phrases after the first few chapters!), but by the end of the course I did have a solid grounding in most (if not all) of the Dutch grammatical constructions, and able to understand most of simple Dutch texts (Metro newspaper etc) with the aid of a dictionary.

I did not devote nearly as much time as recommended per week, hence it took me nearly 18 months to work through. (Then again I tend to work thoroughly and slowly).

On my (far more recent) language course run by a Dutch university I was surprised how much of the grammar considered 'higher level' or 'complex' I already knew through this book (for instance coordinating/subordinating conjunctions, and the resulting word order in the sentence).

My next step after this course was to read the popular Dutch children's book 'Pluk van de Petteflet' by Annie MG Schmidt (with the Routledge Dutch dictionary, and audio CD set for the book). This is also highly recommended and a fun way to learn!
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on 10 May 2012
I bought this book as I am hoping to teach myself Dutch, and its claim of a basic grounding in 3 months was very appealing.
I am currently at about week 5, which has given me a firm grounding in the present tense and a lot of vocabulary. I have been working on it for about half an hour 4 days a week and find the pace just right, I don't feel too out of my depth with a little revision here and there.
There are vocabulary pages every so often and conversations at the end of each section, which are great for testing your knowledge and hearing the language spoken.
Intermittently, there are exerises which are really helpful. However, sometimes they seem to quiz you on knowledge which has not yet been covered, which seems slightly backward.
Sometimes explanations can be too brief, though with a bit of googling around the subject it all makes much more sense.
Overall, i'd say its a great resource for a basic grounding, but I don't think I would want to use it entirely on its own. The occasional use of an online translator when words which inexplicably aren't on vocabulary pages appear is useful, and other web pages supplement some of the trickier aspects of grammar.
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on 5 December 2014
Let's be honest here - anything that says "3 Months" when it comes to language learning is going to leave you at a basic level at best. The claim that you "will feel confident in understanding and speaking the language" is a bit far. I find it a bit awkward that companies marketing products have to make these exaggerated claims to compete with other companies making exaggerated claims, when it's otherwise a reasonable and solid product.

I had been learning Dutch with internet resources for 2 and a half months. I went to the Netherlands and realised that whilst I understood the intent of lots of written text, my listening skills were awful. I bought this book to improve my grammar skills and bought it with the CDs to improve my listening skills.

When it came the product box was really good quality. The first thing I did was copy the CDs on a computer so that I could play them on my MP3 player. The content of the CDs is good, the quality of the actual CD discs themselves was poor though. During copying there were lots of misreads and the player struggled to read them. Ultimately this didn't matter to me as I now use the MP3 copies, but if you want to play them from a CD player then this should be kept in mind.

I find the book itself good but quite hard going to work through. It isn't exactly rip-roaring fun! I know that generally grammar and fun don't mix but I'm just left with the feeling that, although it's probably the best of its sort, it's missing something. However, I use the MP3s I made from the CDs every day. These I mostly repeat playing all the way through. At first I found them quite fast, after a few weeks I've found them much easier.

Therefore I think this is a good resource for the price. But I think it's more of a companion resource for another method of learning. Currently I'm using this with the Duolingo and Memrise websites, which is a combination that I think works well.
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on 9 September 2013
I bought this book and cd because my girlfriend is Dutch. I am now half way through week 11 and I am already holding my own speaking with Dutch people, it is quite remarkable! Highly recommended product, gives you a really solid grounding that you can then build on as you converse in the language.
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on 27 July 2014
A clear and concise Dutch course which supplies 3 CDs to help with pronunciation which is fundamental in Dutch. It took more than 10 days for the book to be delivered to Italy from UK: I wished there had been an alternative means of delivery and I would have paid extra to have the book and CDs soon. Otherwise very satisfied.
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on 15 December 2013
The book is great; specially I like the sequence of which new subjects are brought up as you progress.
Many of my questions about the rules in the Dutch language, which I hadn't been able to find an organised answer for, were actually answered in the first few chapters in a nicely structured way!
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on 6 April 2016
This is the worst language book I have ever seen. The conversations are ridiculous with random dialogue mostly with people being rude to each other or about each other. The starting vocabulary does not encompass the words one uses in everyday parlance but random words and conversations( the first one has two people bitching about two women they see frim a distance one who is wearing a wig, the other who is fat and both of whom who have shoes worn down at the heel). I have no idea why the author would include conversations whereby a person going into a library is rude to a librarian. Choose any other book. This one is awful.
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on 1 June 2014
The language tuition is set out in a very user friendly manner.....even for a mid sixties brain!
I would thoroughly recommend it
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on 21 April 2013
Easy to follow and seems very clear. Takes steps at steady pace with plenty of time for revision. Useful starting point.
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on 28 June 2013
It is easy to follow and methodical. It is logical. The CD is excellent, being both comprehensive and easy to follow..
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