Customer Reviews


3 Reviews
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A excellent introduction to learning this language
As a newcomer to the Czech language I was impressed with this book.
It addresses well the needs of the student but demands a commitment
from the student to be diligent with the exercises. I did not purchase
the accompanying CD and so I am reliant on another website for being
able to hear the sounds of letters and words.

My recommendation is...
Published 12 months ago by Alan Rayner

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too much too soon.
I suppose this is a 'complete' first course, but I'm afraid the learning curve it presents to complete beginners such as myself is far, far too steep. After a month of struggling with it spending some time on most days, I am still only on Chapter 2, and I believe it is the book's fault, not mine. The book piles on far too much information far too quickly, and I am finding...
Published 6 months ago by Martin T.


Most Helpful First | Newest First

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A excellent introduction to learning this language, 10 July 2014
By 
Alan Rayner (Bideford Devon) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Complete Czech Beginner to Intermediate Course: Learn to read, write, speak and understand a new language with Teach Yourself (Paperback)
As a newcomer to the Czech language I was impressed with this book.
It addresses well the needs of the student but demands a commitment
from the student to be diligent with the exercises. I did not purchase
the accompanying CD and so I am reliant on another website for being
able to hear the sounds of letters and words.

My recommendation is that one gets a good grounding in the sounds
of the language before starting on the main material so that one has
a correct "mental sounding" of the words in the book. It would be very
easy to absorb incorrect pronunciation just by reading. The book has
some good material on the non-phonetic aspects (eg insertion of an
"n" sound after "m" in some circumstances or changes from "k" to "g")
and these should be understood as early as possible.

Any language book should allow the student to learn by osmosis (usage
with embedded repetition of key elements) but also provide very clear
explanations of why/how things occur. This book has "Insight" blocks
that address this aspect nicely but the supportive theme is present
also through all the commentary as each item is introduced.

I am coming from a knowledge of another Slavonic language and so my
need is slightly different to that of an English monoglot. Thus I have been
able to scan-read the content to get an overview of the many differences
between Czech and my second language but I will certainly need much
more application to learn properly - application ably supported by this book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too much too soon., 3 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I suppose this is a 'complete' first course, but I'm afraid the learning curve it presents to complete beginners such as myself is far, far too steep. After a month of struggling with it spending some time on most days, I am still only on Chapter 2, and I believe it is the book's fault, not mine. The book piles on far too much information far too quickly, and I am finding it a real struggle to assimilate all of it. I don't know if my strategy is wrong - maybe I should be ploughing ahead even though I don't understand all that I've read so far - but I'm pretty sure if I did that I would be floundering even more. I have had no such trouble with French and German in the past, although I must say that they are more closely related to English than is Czech - and that is another reason the book needs to go more slowly for English speakers. If I were Russian, I'm sure this book would be easy: the languages are as similar as English and French are to each other.

The audio programme that you have to buy separately, and not so cheaply, is also not so good. The actors consistently sound like they don't really mean what they're saying, which is offputting in itself, but on top of that, they speak far too quickly. Of course, there is an argument that native Czechs will speak quickly so I should get used to it, but I don't think that in Chapters 1 and 2 of a beginners' book the speakers should be slurring the words together, ignoring full stops, and going so fast I can't even keep up with reading and understanding the dialogue. In the early days of learning, I would hope to be able to listen to the dialogues, pick out all the individual words and hear the correct pronunciation, and have time to recall the meaning. When I am fluent, no doubt this will all be easy, but in the beginning I have to do all this consciously and it requires time.

I will persevere with this book for now, but I am also looking around for one that presents a gentler, yet still 'complete', introduction to the language.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete Czech: Teach Yourself [Complete Languages], 8 April 2014
By 
stephen Walsh (BRADFORD, West Yorkshire, GB) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
An excellent introduction to all aspects of the Czech experience of life is gained through this book. Pronunciation and
intonation are available on CDs from David Short and his colleagues at Complete Czech Audio Support.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews