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on 11 August 2011
My French is good enough to tackle the classic novels, but with frequent use of a dictionary, especially where there's an unknown word which is key to understanding. I've set this as my Kindle dictionary and can now get basic look up when I need it. It works pretty well, finding words like "chevalet", but not "paravent" and it spots verb forms, noun plurals etc pretty well too. It's good enough for me, and better than carrying around a small dictionary. It's not perfect, but at such a low price I don't see how anyone could complain too much.

But for the perfectionists:

It doesn't pick up words with apostrophes eg "s'occuper". It doesn't give noun genders. It tells you that eg "bottines" is the plural of "bottine" but to find what "bottine" means, you have to click down to the detail level (and in the case of verb forms you may then need to scroll through a page or two to get to the infinitive)

Some of this is because the initial pop up window in Kindle is small so it only displays the top level. And I suspect that other dictionaries may be similar in this respect.
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on 25 August 2011
First, I was pleased at the number of words this little dictionary offered: 200,000 isn't shabby even if some of the entries are conjugations of the same verb. (Compare this with the Collins Concise which for over £12 offers 24200 'references & entries'). It hasn't just kept to the most common words (my main criticism of Merriam-Webster's offering) making it a real help when reading French text. For instance, it contains the slightly archaic slang exclamation 'bath' (super, smashing!) something which my biggish Larousse also contains. It even contains the word as a noun meaning a particularly high quality letter paper. I had to resort to the French online Wiktionary for this translation which appeared in none of my French reference books.
It can be set as a primary Kindle dictionary so that the translation appears in your text when you set the cursor next to a word which is in the Dictionary.
It loses a star(and I would have preferred to have lost it only half a star) only because one or two translations could mislead a true beginner eg a 'sébile' is described as 'a round vessel made of wood or earth'. It is actually a bowl, such as a begging bowl, made of wood or clay. This leads me to believe that the writer may have English as a second (albeit well-mastered) language.
Like all the other translation dictionaries I've found so far, it lacks the ability to allow users to add their own entries. It will, at least, allow you to annotate. Like the Merriam dictionaries, it doesn't allow you to search the English text but I'd be happy to buy an English-French version.

Although I bought this only because of its cheap price, it has been a pleasant surprise. I would have happily paid more for a longer version. On the strength of this product, I have also bought Nicolato's Italian English dictionary.
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on 8 December 2011
As far as I can tell this is not meant to be an all-inclusive English-French dictionary. All it is, is a simple lookup dictionary for when you're reading a French text on your Kindle and you don't know what a word means so you need to look it up quickly. And it does that very well, particularly at the price. It's certainly a LOT quicker to find out what a word means than the traditional method of putting down my Kindle, picking up my weighty Collins/Robert, finding the word (assuming I've managed to work out the conjugation which is the bit that always gets me, I can spend a great deal of time trying to work out what the infinitive might be for the verb conjugation I am reading, and very often fail miserably), reading the translation, putting down the Collins/Robert, picking up the Kindle again. And none of that is possible on the Tube in the morning! Using this as the Kindle's internal dictionary rather than a separate dictionary means that the story flow is interrupted far less by your failure to know a particular word.

You already know if the word is masculine or feminine because the le/la will be there in the text before you. Yes when it says "plural of xxx" you have to delve a little further, but it's still nowhere near as time-consuming (or inconvenient on the Tube) as having a separate large dictionary at hand. Given its price I think it's a marvellous piece of kit for assisting with language learning. It's not meant to replace a big, inclusive English-French dictionary. If you want to know more about a word then jot it down and look it up in detail elsewhere. But if you're just trying to improve your French vocabulary by reading some French stories and you have to stop every page to look up something you don't know, then this cheap little dictionary, set as the Kindle's default dictionary, is a fabulous aid that doesn't break the bank.

I have also purchased the Italian version in preparation for starting to read some Italian stories - particularly now that Kindle on amazon.it has arrived!
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on 3 January 2012
I risked £1.32 on what I thought might be a pretty indifferent, but better than nothing, Kindle French English Dictionary. I was impressed; it's range is greater than I had expected and way better than the basic Collins which I also bought. It picks up pretty obscure words and "Verlain" well. Using it as the default dictionary on my Kindle has made reading French literature much faster and more seamless.

Some negative comments though, although it is claimed that it will identify words preceded by d' and l'. It doesn't. My version only works on words where you can position the highlight bar immediately before the word itself. This is a real disadvantage, as is the fact that it will often say plural of xxxxx without giving you a meaning for xxxxx, rather frustratiing.

Three stars on the basis of being ridiculously good value.

NB have now replaced it with the Collins French English as my native Dictionary (originally this was not available) and it is hugely better

But why don't Amazon make available the native French-English dictionary that is available in France??
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on 1 January 2012
I wanted a dictionary to help me read Proust on my Kindle. There are only 3 or 4 compatible ones available. I rejected Collins, because it doesn't work with the Kindle look up feature. Merriam Webster is too basic. The French-English Wiktionary looked like the business, so I bought that. However, it only knew the words I already knew. As soon as I came to a word I had not come across, the Wictionary drew a blank as well.

That only left this one, which I wish I had bought first. It's actually pretty good. It picks up 75% of the difficult words and can cope with most of the variations of word endings and beginnings. You often need to enter the dictionary proper to find the root word, and sometimes go back or forward a page, but that is not a hardship.

The main thing is that it does the job pretty well and, I promise you, there is no alternative out there. I have done the research. Actually there is a dedicated Kindle French-English dictionary, which looks excellent, but it is not available in the UK (don't ask...)
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on 9 March 2012
Ok, so it's cheap and has some French words, so I can hardly give it less than 2 stars. However, within seconds I was disappointed with the glaring lack of genders. Would it really have been too difficult to add a little m or f to each noun entry? Apparently so. A great shame, as no French noun is complete without its gender indicator. You do not learn "piste", but "une piste"! Often that is the whole reason for my wanting to look up a word. I know what a "pignon" is, but I want to check the gender. And no, my use of a French dictionary is far from limited to occasions when I have a French word in front of me. I sometimes just want to know if it's masculine or feminine! As I said, a great shame.
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I think some of the negative reviews here are from people who are trying to use this dictionary in ways for which it wasn't designed: so it's not a French phrase book, it doesn't have extensive 'tourist' vocabulary (e.g. for reading restaurant and café menus), and it's not ideal, though perfectly possible, to use it as a standard dictionary where you input a word in French and the English translation pops up. Where it comes into its own is if you are reading French texts on your Kindle and need an instant translation of a specific word - a sort of quick and dirty translation/reminder.

As one reviewer here notes, it won't translate the odd French word in an English text: Kindle recognises that the majority language is English and so automatically looks up the French word in your English dictionary. As long as the language of your text is French, however, then this works fine. I read quite a lot of French novels and there are always words that I've forgotten or don't know - and this is perfect as an instant look-up tool. It works the same way as the Kindle English dictionary does: just touch the word (or move the cursor to it on the Kindle Keyboard) and the translation pops up.

This recognises some inflections, though not all, and the translation/definition is brief and basic: perfect for reading novels. I also have the Kindle standard French-French dictionary in use and so if a word is not recognised in this French-English dictionary, Kindle automatically defaults to French-French which usually sorts out my problem.

So this is a good tool if you already have relatively good French and read a lot of French Kindle texts - it won't replace a proper dictionary but it's an excellent way of looking up words when reading on the tube without breaking the flow of the text.
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on 3 January 2012
This is ideal to keep at hand when reading French information on the Internet,there are one or two words it doesn't know, but the majority are there and it is much quicker than leafing through a paper dictionary, or looking words up on the web. The ability to set it as the default dictionary on the Kindle is also welcome.
In response to issues raised in other reviews, I would say that for my purposes, omitting the gender of the nouns is unimportant, as I am not writing in French, just trying to decipher it! Also, having enough French grammar to work out the infinitive form of a verb before looking it up tends to speed things up.
My copy was free! Many thanks to the author, and please can I have one for German- English translation?
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on 24 April 2013
I have read quite a few books in French, but am now reading my first Kindle French novel. It is brilliant not to have to put down your book and get out the French dictionary for the words you don't know. You just put your cursor in front of the word, and the English definition pops up. I would say this dictionary has about 70% of the words I don't know, which is why I only gave it 4 stars. However that is probably about the same as my hard-copy old school dictionary, so it is proving very useful. It also has a few rude words, which are almost certainly not in my old school dictionary.
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on 28 July 2012
I bought this dictionary not expecting much because some reviews weren't real good but I was pleasantly surprised. Since my level of french is just intermediate I have to use it a lot even for simper words. I really like that it translates all kinds of verb conjugations or, for example, when you want to check 'aurait' it says 'verb, third person singular present conditional of avoir'. Though it does not say what avoir means. With nouns, the ones that I checked at least, it sometimes gave me gender, sometimes it didn't but I don't think this is a big deal. The most important thing for me is translation of unfamiliar verb forms which is working perfectly for me. For a price like this it is really good!
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