Oxford Beginner's Japanese Dictionary (Multilingual) Paperback – 19 April 2014
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- Publisher : Oxford; Bilingual edition (19 April 2014)
- Language : Multilingual
- Paperback : 480 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0199298521
- ISBN-13 : 978-0199298525
- Item Weight : 435 g
- Dimensions : 19.56 x 2.03 x 12.7 cm
- Country of Origin : United Kingdom
- Best Sellers Rank: #28,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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This is a very good book, it's quite thick and A5 size. As soon as I began reading it I started leaning new words and phrases. I do recommend you learn at least a little bit of hiragana while you're waiting for it to arrives it will help you jump straight into learning, however, the dictionary does have some exercises and charts in the back which is very helpful.
This is perfect for anyone learning or studying the Japanese language as it can really help you to build up your vocabulary as well as phrases.
The first section is in Japanese with the English counterparts at the side, the back is full of English words with their Japanese counterparts. A lot of things have sentences to explain what they're saying the "use it in a sentence" thing which is very good.
This isn't going to make you fluent in Japanese on its own and you do need to learn pronunciation as well which the book doesn't teach you but it definitely will help you.
It's a paperback so I don't know why people are complaining that it's made from paper?
I like that it uses hiragana as it forces you to learn / remember and removes the temptation to "cheat". I'd only recommend this as a secondary source to accompany your primary text book(s) or taught classes as it's clearly not designed to actually teach you the language but rather help with vocabulary (you must at-least know hiragana). That said it does give a few grammar tips but as a beginner I found these rather confusing compared to my other beginner resources.
My other two issues are (a) although it's a "beginner" book I feel they could have included more words as I still find myself going online quite often to look words up and (b) included towards the back are a helpful few pages of "Japanese words you must know" it would actually have been nice for English translations in this section or page reference numbers to look up said words being a "beginner's" book.
All in all it was money well spent as I pick words out on a daily basis.
And typically, sometimes there were times that there was a certain word with poor explanation and for that I needed to look it up.
I always prefer physical books, I dont like looking things up on the computer dictionary-wise. Also because it can be distracting when trying to study, 'quickly check this, lets check my emails as well', and before you know it you've been wasting time on the computer.
So, a dictionary was the best thing to go for in my case. Now, I would rate it 3.5, but unfortunately I cant do that and it's not worth 4 stars.
I think the dictionary is great, has great explanations and the fact that it's hiragana/katakana is very useful to practice reading on the spot, it also simply makes much more sense that way.
The problem is that there are just so many words I cant find in it, commonly used words. The english > japanese side of the book is also thicker than the japanese > english side of the book. Meaning both sections of the book have different words. So half of the time I still have to get on my computer to find the meaning of a word.
Second problem for me is that the front and the back of the dictionary is very poor quality, The front and back is double layered paper but they're being seperated, both the back and the front. As if they just glued two alligned pieces of paper together, so to speak.
I've barely used it thus far and is about 2 weeks old, I take extremely good care of my things because I very much do value them, and yet it's breaking down so to say. You can always see that a book is used, but to think it cant maintain somewhat of a condition whatsoever is disappointing to me.
I would recommend this if you already have a different dictionary and need better explanations and versions of certain words, but not as a single and only dictionary.