Monday, January 23, 2023

Book Review: Nothing But Beginner Vocab - Spanish Edition

Specially written for beginner and intermediate Spanish students, Nothing But Beginner Vocab is your ultimate handbook for mastering 90% of the vital Spanish words that you’ll need for fluency. With a practical mix of quizzes, exercises, and exams to test your memory, inside you’ll discover a comprehensive path that makes learning Spanish fun.

Even if you’ve never spoken a syllable of Spanish before, or if you’re stuck at the A1-B2 level, this workbook provides you with all the must-know words that you’ll need to learn, develop, train, and test your Spanish vocab, so you can build your confidence and deepen your understanding of this amazing language.

John Loehr's guide to Spanish vocabulary was released in January of 2023 as an eBook. Victory Editing provided a galley for review.

I took two years of Spanish back in high school. Over four decades later, only a very small subset has still stuck with me. Even when the pandemic started a few years ago, I tried some online tools for a refresher but they still felt a little out of sync with what I was looking for.

Loehr's guide here is exactly what the title says - vocabulary broken down into lists of nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs and special words which come in groups (like numbers, pronouns, conjuctions, prepositions, etc.). Each list has the side-by-side English word and its Spanish translation. After each list is a quiz (which I think is always helpful to test retention). There are two sets of lists: beginner (level A1), elementary (level A2) and intermediate (levels B1 and B2). There is a lot here - close to 3800 words. Most basic, every day conversation words are covered.

What is not here, though, are pronunciation guides to words and conjugations of the verbs. Also, there are no example sentences which show how the words go together (which is something the online courses did a lot - however, they were often sentences that could not easily fit into everyday conversation).

Therefore, I see this book as a good supplement to someone who is either currently in a Spanish course or who has taken a Spanish course in the past and just needs some refresher material (like I noted I am previously). This is one I can see myself going back to a lot to sharpen my Spanish skills.

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