Complete Greek Course Book/CD Pack (Teach Yourself Languages) Paperback – 1 Aug 2003
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Paperback, 1 Aug 2003
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Top Customer Reviews
The sequence that the materials is presented in is logical for someone who is trying to master Greek, taking you through basic introductions and greetings to more complex interactions. Unlike other reviewers, I do not consider the dialogues given to be irrelevant. Quite the opposite in fact. But this must be considered in the context in which the book is written - for those who want to learn Greek properly, and not for those who want a few phrases for going on holiday. For this a language-learning book is inappropriate, and a phrasebook is much better - the Lonely Planet phrasebooks are excellent for this purpose.
It is often difficult to make dialogues in language-learning books not appear forced, because the language used will always seem simple compared to the language you would use in a normal conversation. However for someone who is used to learning a lot of languages, the order that you are taken through seems logical - and accords to the European Parliament's recommendations on language learning.
To comment on another reviewer's comment about learning the Greek script, most of the first 9 chapters have spellings both using the Greek aphabet, and using the transliterated versions - including all the dialogues. If you are wanting to seriously learn Greek, then you need to master the alphabet as quickly as possible, but you are not thrown in head-first as the previous reviewer would suggest.Read more ›
One complaint I have about the newest edition of Teach Yourself is that, unlike the previous edition, this one is printed on cheaper paper, it's harder to keep the pages open, and it just doesn't feel like it's going to physically last.
That said, the second edition is better suited for beginners, with more help in pronouncing Greek.
Also, the spoken and written dialogues give a hell of a lot of information in one go, rather than breaking down the key phrases and presenting sentences you might actually use. The result is you remember very little - e.g. the useful phrase 'I don't know' is so hidden in a complex dialogue that you don't (or at least I still can't) remember it at the end.
I did my best with chapters 1 and 2 before going to Greece, and found myself unable to order a coffee, but being able to recite to perfection the mindnumbingly useless dialogues of chapter one where Antonio explains to Mary, in Greek, that he is only speaks Italian, or when Domenico outlines that he's from Milan.
Now call me pedantic if you wish, but what is the obsession with Italian in a language book in English? As you can imagine, people were confused that all I could say was that I speak 'mono italika' when in fact I don't speak any italika whatsoever! Argh!
Having learned to read like an infant I can finally progress to chapter 3, more promisingly entitled 'let's have a glass of ouzo'. Mary is meeting up with Georgos, and Domenico is having breakfast later with two girls, one French and one German. It sounds much more promising....
But as a practical teach-yourself language guide, I'm pretty disappointed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good course, especially if you know a little already. It covers all the basic grammar which other beginner courses tend to skip. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Kia Jackson
I found the book very easy to use, with short chapters based on different common situations/dialogues, varied exercises and revision tests. Read morePublished on 3 Oct. 2009 by Lula Geddes