To learn a language, whether it’s going to be German, Portuguese, Italian or Spanish, theory is important! Indeed, without the basics, it will be difficult for you to progress.
Did you know ? Castilian is the most studied language in the world and spoken by 400 million people across the blue planet, especially in South America. So it’s up to you to get started!
You can of course take private or group lessons to get an introduction to the Spanish language, but it is a safe bet that your teacher will advise you a few books to improve your knowledge.
And if you prefer to self-teach on your own, then books to learn Spanish will be absolutely necessary!
Whether you want to go to Madrid or Barcelona, to discover South America, or simply for the pleasure of speaking a foreign language, Superprof has put together a selection of the best books for you to learn Spanish.
When we say classic, we don’t refer to Don Quixote, which is not an easy read in Spanish!
Let’s start with some classic books that will give you the basics of the Spanish alphabet, grammar, spelling, conjugation and vocabulary. This will help you prepare for a language course, perfect your accent or learn to pronounce complicated words correctly!
The author, Francisco Javier Anton Martinez, proposes a solid and effective method, which is based on:
The pack consists of a 612-page book and a CD / MP3 for less than 70$. This method consists of 100 lessons that cover the main points of Spanish grammar, the so-called common vocabulary (the one to communicate in everyday life) and exercises.
You will assimilate the language in two steps:
At the end, the final level, called “without difficulty” will ask you to dialogue in a current conversation to verify that you know enough Spanish grammar and vocabulary. Have a native speaker on hand for this!
Half an hour a day to experience live dialogues, reminders of Spanish classes and easy exercises. Within a few months, you can chat with friends or strangers without difficulty. It’s common that an adult masters and uses easily 1500 words after practicing this method.
If you want to join this great family, this big book to learn Spanish seems like it will get you on the good track!
The Assimil method, which has already 85 years behind it, has succeeded in opening the doors of foreign languages to millions of people. It remains to know if it suits you, too!
Keep in mind that learning a language requires rigor, discipline and great involvement, especially when you do it alone.
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Although Margarita Madrigal wrote this book in the 1950’s, it’s still a “magic key” to learning the basics! Simple and logical, this 496 page book is built around 45 lessons.
The method is mainly intended for beginner students coming from universities and big schools but it is up to you to see if it suits you in your own situation!
The idea is to learn by listening and to fix knowledge by exercises written in the book of exercises in Spanish included.
An evening on the ramblas of Barcelona to speak with locals while enjoying tapas, it is well worth to confront cheerfully the pages of a Spanish manual, right?
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This updated language-learning guide, with a brand-new free audio app, helps you learn to speak Spanish in 15-minute lessons with each a different theme.
The 12 chapters are broken down into 15-minute daily lessons that combine vocabulary and grammar essentials about a range of themes, from socializing to doing business for the most user-friendly, accessible language guide on the market.
Hey yes, 15 minutes a day are enough to acquire the bases of the Spanish language!
For all those who feel overbooked, you can enjoy the cooking time of your paella or just part of your lunch break, to devote yourself to learning a grammar point, questions of understanding, or even a little game of conjugation.
This method includes:
For less than 15$, it’s tempting! If you are not satisfied, you can always devote your 15 minutes to write an email to its author…
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This new method, published by Harrap’s, was developed by Michel Thomas, a famous American linguist who studied foreign language learning for 25 years.
We’re cheating a bit because if this method is proposed by an editor, it is not strictly speaking work! It is a 100% audio method in 7 CDs: no book, no notes, no memorization requested (it is done without even you realize it).
The goal of Michel Thomas is to make you learn a language as easily as if it were your first language!
You are initially confident in explaining and pointing out the similarities between Spanish and English. This is true after all: they are two Latin languages, therefor etymologically close to one another! You will also quickly see that Spanish grammar is just as complex as ours!
In just a few hours of active listening, you will be able to acquire a solid foundation in grammar and structure of the language to form your own phrases!
But how ?
The CDs are actually a private lesson with a teacher and two students. You slip into the skin of the third student and answer the questions of the teacher by pausing, before the students of the private course answers and gives you the correction!
Very useful to teach you the basics of the Spanish language in a few hours and allow you to take insurance for your future travels and exchanges with native speakers!
On the other hand, this revolutionary method is not necessarily within the reach of all the scholarships: 70$!
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You have a beginner level and you are lost as soon as you are asked “¿Cómo te llamas? “,” ¿Que tal? “Or” ¿Cuántos años tienes? “?
The purpose of this Spanish conversation booklet to learn Spanish is to enable the student to integrate current Spanish, as it is spoken today, quickly and well.
The formula is enticing and rather fun, but it is aimed at motivated and autonomous people who are not afraid of potting books on their free time. You need to know that for interactions, we are close to none!
But for less than 8 €, the promises are kept and the results are there if you stick to it, it’s up to you to see!
Otherwise, for those who want a bit more audio, Dummies offer the Spanish “mega audio kit” for dummies with a book, 5 audio CDs, online exercises and a mini lexicon offered.
This book, developed by Spanish teachers, is fairly well structured into chapters (in the office, holding a conversation, at the bank, at the restaurant, in the shops, etc.) to learn the basics in all situations of everyday life. However, you can expect to put in around 50$.
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It is good to soak up the culture of the country, but we don’t recommend a glass of sangria between two readings!
If the idea of learning a foreign language in a book discourages you, we’lll have to find a more amusing way to convince you to open a book! Here is our selection of more fun books to put you back on the Spanish tracks in a fun way!
Learning Spanish, El Nuevo Compañero de Cuarto, proposes a new method to learn the basics of the Spanish language and develop vocabulary in record time. It also helps to refine its understanding of Spanish grammar by reading stories in English and Spanish.
It’s for you if:
This book to learn Spanish is a real game: will you recognize all the pairs of antonyms in history?
What are antonyms? Adjectives having opposite meanings: for example true and false, polite and rude, or beautiful and ugly.
This is to find the 100 pairs of antonyms in the text and to list them in Spanish of course! Enhance your vocabulary quickly and in a fun way!
It will then leave the book a few days and then resume it to reactivate the memory and test what you can remember.
Two key words: fun and love! And for less than 5$, yes, you read well!
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We recommend you the small collection amusing 300 chistes españoles e hispanoamericanos (300 Spanish and Spanish-American jokes) for less than 8$.
To understand some jokes, it may be useful to know some phrases like:
The best part of this kind of book as part of your Spanish course?
The less interesting aspect:
So, when will your next laugh be? By the way, to have a laugh in Spanish is said to “tener an attack of risa”, so better start early.
And if you laugh in Spanish and you want to transcribe it in writing, you should not say “ahahah” but “jajaja” (with the guttural pronunciation of the Spanish jota)!
Go rummage through your city’s library! There is necessarily a shelf of literature in original language, you will find your happiness at a low cost!
The best books to learn Spanish are not only Spanish course books and exercises!
Indeed, you can approach the Hispanic language through novels, a good way to take pleasure in learning. Just as one does not begin by reading Shakespeare in sixteenth century English, you will have to prefer easy-to-understand literature such as airport novels.
Here are some ideas to start smoothly:
Bilingual editions are also a good option to start reading in Spanish because they allow to study the structure of sentences and compare. Don’t hesitate to stay on the lookout for books that we present to you or others that might please you in bilingual edition.
If you buy your books in bookstores, ask the sellers for advice. They are often specialized in their department and will guide you towards a book rather than another according to your tastes and not only according to the place of the author in the best sales.
The short format of tales also appears as a good compromise, here are 3 examples to less than 10$:
The short format has several advantages: first of all you read a story fairly quickly, and therefore feel a quick satisfaction, then you can read without losing the thread.
This is definitely a format to start to read in Spanish without getting discouraged!
With audio books, you can listen to your favorite stories everywhere, even while cycling!
Don’t just put aside audio books in Spanish! It is a great way to learn the pronunciation, the rhythm of the phrases, the accentuation, and to be charmed by the musicality of the country of Flamenco!
There are many websites that offer Spanish audio books as a free download:
Now that you know what books to learn to learn Spanish, do not deprive yourself of free sites to learn Spanish to better master the language of Cervantes! So, what book will you allow yourself to try to shine in Spanish?
Reading children’s books is a good way to improve one’s level of Spanish.
Whether you are in the middle of a language school, during evening classes or summer courses, nothing is worth a book to improve your vocabulary, grammar and conjugation!
Less popular than French literature, Spanish literature is full of authors and writers who have improved or changed the Spanish Language
The novels, tales and poems allow to know more about the Spanish culture, about the history of Spain while enriching your vocabulary with new Spanish words.
The beauty of the narrow streets of Seville, the charm of the monuments of Andalusia and the various populations that participated in the rise of a country recognized today for the beauty of its landscapes, the richness of its language and culture.
For the beginners we turn to books of the Spanish literature easier to access as:
More accessible for intermediate and advanced students, the classics of Hispanic literature are at hand:
What can you read when you are a beginner in Spanish?
To learn Spanish, to improve one’s language or to master the Latin language, one can also use comics. Nice for a family setting, easy to access and inexpensive – compared to books in Spanish literature – they provide the learner with an ideal sense of comfort to learn Spanish.
Our little hands that opened this great book, our fleeting eyes that were only passing along the bubbles, and the emotions that each cartoon allowed to grow in us… Ah the beautiful time!
For those who grew up in the 90s, these are imperishable memories and although the mangas are now attracting more interest among the younger generations, one would not deprive themselves of a return to the comics, but this time in a foreign language !
Allergic to reading, tired (cansado) of textbooks or curious to rediscover the world of comics, there are for all tastes, all levels of Spanish and all styles.
We can already turn to comic strips that have brightened our childhood and are now translated into several languages, including Spanish, such as:
Now available on tablets, iPad and PC, it can be found on all legal download platforms such as the iTunes Store and Google Play.
For the more “old school” of us, we can always go to his bookseller or simply get delivered comics paper version directly at home after ordering on amazon.fr.
What kind of book can you read when you have a B1-B2 level in Spanish?
Aside from learning Spanish, many of us aspire to improve our intrinsic qualities, skills and level of understanding in our respective fields.
Thus, a farmer could be interested in books on the evolution of ecology, a teacher on new forms of pedagogy and a translator on new techniques to improve his productivity for example…
For Spanish students who are trying to learn the foreign language, it is a way of combining usefulness with pleasure since they can both progress in Spanish while improving their quality, their work or their daily life.
These training books being specific to each of us, I preferred to cover a theme that will appeal to the greatest number: personal development.
Indeed, personal development books are riding high, so I thought it would be interesting to discover some works in Spanish that can have a positive influence on your life or that of those around you.
Moreover, for those whose Spanish is closer to level A1 than level B1, these books have – like Spanish lessons on the Internet – the advantage of being easier to understand. Here we can not find a chastised language, derived from the medieval Spanish or the structures of sentences closer to the Spanish of Latin America than that of Spain.
Here is a small but non-exhaustive list of the books of personal development impossible to circumvent when you learn Spanish:
Should we go through the classics of Spanish literature to learn this Latin language.
We are used to complaining about contemporary cinema, its inability to produce films of good quality and its focus on the best of the “box office”.
Nevertheless, the film industry can sometimes, in its heyday, sublimate a literary work to give it a more real, visual and eternal character.
Several works of the world literature have already been revisited for the big screen without destroying their nature such as:
These literary examples of which the Hollywood success is obvious are the best known.
Nevertheless, behind the comfort gained by its independence and behind the success-film there are less exposed world-wide – except in the Hispanic-speaking countries – movies, cinematographic adaptations of Hispanic works.
Again, this is a way for Spanish neo-speakers to tame Spanish literature and culture in the most contemporary ways.
Thus, streaming, dvd or video on demand can be cultivated in other ways than by learning Spanish online with online courses, podcasts, or other methods:
So whether you’ve been speaking Spanish for a while of have started this as a new language, you see that there are many ways for you to learn. If you no longer wish to take a Spanish teacher, you can also find Spanish speakers with who to converse, travel in Spanish speaking countries, learn Spanish online with apps, or be an auto-didact and learn by reading books and methods that others have tried before. Language courses aren’t for everyone, so if you feel like this is how you can become more fluent, then go for it!
Does your child have issues with reading in Spanish?