Basic Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook (Grammar Workbooks) 2nd Edition

16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0415472159
ISBN-10: 0415472156
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Basic Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook (Grammar Workbooks) + Intermediate Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook (Grammar Workbooks) + Basic Patterns of Chinese Grammar: A Student's Guide to Correct Structures and Common Errors
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for the first edition:

‘Very well structured and clearly explained’ Dr Qian Kan, Open University

About the Author

Yip Po-Ching is a Research Fellow, City University of Hong Kong

Don Rimmington is Emeritus Professor of Chinese Studies, University of Leeds.

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Product Details

  • Series: Grammar Workbooks
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 2 edition (March 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415472156
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415472159
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #236,499 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Jean R Henzel Jr on March 14, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book and its companion book "Intermediate Chinese" are very instructive for serious students of the Mandarin Chinese language. The books provide an excellent reference on the various component parts of the language. However, these texts are not for the uninitiated. Some basic knowledge of the language is imperative if you are to get the most out of these texts.
Being stationed in Zhongshan China, it was imperative for me to learn the language and learn it quickly. I waded through at least 10 books and tape courses on the subject. My recommendations after much experimentation are as follows:
1. Chinese The Easy Way - Philip F.C. Williams - Ph.D. and Yenna Wu - Ph.D.. This book will ground you in the grammer and pronunciation essentials quickly and in my opinion is the best beginners book on the market for this subject matter.
2. Transparent Languages "Langauge Now - Mandarin Chinese" software. Allows you to actually speak and grades your pronunciation.
Following, this, use these two texts to round it all out. The texts would definitely be a bit easier to use if they had an index but this isn't a show stopper at all.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By M. Lansing on February 13, 2005
Format: Paperback
Having completed 270 hours of study, I bought both this book and the intermediate level book to review and build upon what I had learned. I found the book very suitable for these purposes. Both books together provide comprehensive coverage of all essential Chinese grammar concepts, and there are helpful cross references between chapters. Each grammar point is illustrated with several examples, and possible sources of confusion are clarified. At the end of each chapter are a variety of self-checking exercises and an answer key in the appendix.

My only complaint is that the pinyin is in boldface, which distracts my eyes away from the characters. Any serious student of Chinese learns literacy along with speaking skills, so pinyin should not dominate.

Even here in China, I have not found a comprehensive reference/self-study grammar book. These books are a must for any person who endeavors to master Chinese. These books should not be used alone as model sentences do not provide full context for the language. These books are an excellent supplement to an integrated textbook.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ma WenRui on May 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
A good reference for Mandarin grammar and language usage. Not for the uninitiated but decent after a few months of study.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 7, 2002
Format: Paperback
Routledge put out such a wonderful self-study book on Mandarin Chinese called "Colloquial Chinese". I was rather disappointed though with this book, although I initially found the organization of the chapters appealing. In reality, it sits on my bookshelf and rarely gets opened, as it never seems to address the specific grammar problems that I need help with.
Furthermore, there is no index in the back of the book, which means spending more time than I'd care to -- flipping through the pages in search of an answer. I would have like to have seen a chapter on Word Order, for example.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By K.L. Frederick on February 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
I was able to browse through this book in the bookstore. I study Mandarin Chinese for one and a half year, speaking fluently, and I own quite a few different study books, so I can judge them easily. I was impressed with this book and certainly plan on buying it - just it's a bit pricy. Clear presentation of the grammar, AS it is used by the native speakers, advanced English without mistakes, and use of Hanyu Pinyin romanization *without mistakes* (as often seen as an obstacle in Chinese study books). The other book(s) from this author has the same but I suppose more advanced (as a follow up course). These are not books for the absolute beginner, though! It is not the kind of friendly course book with stories and all vocabulary laid out for each chapter, no it is not. It is, however, all presented in a very clear way.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Zede63 on December 1, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This review is specifically about the digitalization of "basic chinese" into the kindle edition. In order to be fair to the authors, please refer to other reviews if you want to know more about the quality of the contents.

Chinese characters can be quite complicated little pieces of drawing. They often contain more than 10-15 strokes. Unfortunately, in the kindle edition of "basic chinese", chinese characters are pictures, scanned with a very low resolution, which make it very hard, or impossible, to decifer them. On top of that most kindle applications (including the kindle itself) don't allow to enhance picture sizes (it should not be too complicated to implement though). In order to read one character, it is necessary to stick the nose to the screen. Chinese is a hard language, and I don't believe anyone can possibly bear with the pain of reading characters with this book. It is a very simple thing, but can be a total showstopper when it comes to using that book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Caroline T. on September 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
My Chinese class required this book so I got it. The book is an excellent tool for learning grammar. The book is clear and concise. A beginner could use this book, but I think it's better if you already have a basic knowledge of some chinese (mostly because vocabulary is not covered - the book is purely grammar). The book does the job well and isn't overwhelming.
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