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Living Language Spanish, Complete Edition: Beginner through advanced course, including 3 coursebooks, 9 audio CDs, and free online learning Audio CD – Unabridged, August 9, 2011

316 customer reviews

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Living Language Spanish, Complete Edition: Beginner through advanced course, including 3 coursebooks, 9 audio CDs, and free online learning + Easy Spanish Step-By-Step + See It and Say It in Spanish
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Product Details

  • Series: Complete
  • Audio CD: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Living Language; Com/Pap/Ps edition (August 9, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307478599
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307478597
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 3.2 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (316 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,069 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

333 of 342 people found the following review helpful By Heather Trumbo on November 4, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I purchased Rosetta stone Spanish a year ago. I worked on it diligently but didn't feel like I was learning Spanish. I bought this and feel like I've made much more progress and the accompanying CDs are perfect for the car. Don't waste money on Rosetta stone, living language is a better program and the price makes it the best.
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248 of 256 people found the following review helpful By Jamais sans mon minou on December 27, 2012
Format: Audio CD
NEW EDITION:
This latest edition of the Living Language self-study language programmes is a modified and enhanced version of their "Complete: Basics" series. It seems to be part of a program by Random House to consolidate their language courses. Unfortunately, the vastly superior "Ultimate" series has been abandoned in the process. The new "Complete" edition is divided into three levels. The first level, "Essential", is drawn from the Living Language "Starting Out In Spanish". The second and third levels, "Intermediate" and "Advanced", respectively, are, for the most part, slightly modified versions of the previous "Complete: Basic Spanish". The Intermediate and Advanced books contain "Units", each of which covers a theme (Family, Work, Hotel, Restaurant, Medical Appointment, etcetera). The Units are divided into four "Lessons", the first three of which present the Words, Phrases, and Sentences that are used in the fourth lesson Conversations. Although the approach seems quite logical, it does take a little getting used to at first as, occasionally, some individual Phrases or Sentences seem a little odd because they are missing the context of the end-of-unit Conversation. Each Lesson also contains explanations of grammar. Despite the publisher's decision to label the second and third books as Intermediate and Advanced, be advised that this is STILL an BASIC self-study language course. Nonetheless, enhancements include: a vastly improved visual presentation, some much-appreciated additional exercise material, and access to some fairly simple on-line learning activities. Also, a glossary and a summary of grammar are included as appendices in all three levels.
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308 of 322 people found the following review helpful By H on October 3, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this set after seeing a friend's copy of the French edition. I really like the set up and I do feel that I am learning a lot (though the first book seemed mostly a refresher of items I learned in high school and college).

Positives:
-Division of chapters is clear and the companion cds read almost every word on the page. (Which makes it easy to read along with the chapter or use it as extra practice on your drive to work as I do.
-The book is written in a way that seems more organic to learning conversational Spanish. Instead of just learning a bunch of words and how to conjugate them or just a set of general vocabulary each chapter is topic based. This means the the number section isn't just "uno, dos, tres." It also includes "Tengo dos gatos" and "Ella tiene tres perros." (I have two cats. She has three dogs.) Slowly interspersing new vocabulary, sentence structure, gender-dominance of the terms, and of course conjugation.

Negatives: (why I did not give it 5 stars)
-You have to come in with a basic knowledge of the Spanish alphabet and sometimes the pronunciation doesn't seem as clear in writing.
-Sometimes some of the most important/interesting vocabulary is thrown into the summary paragraph at the end of the chapter giving the reader only one chance to familiarize with that set of vocabulary before it is either not referenced again or thrown into another part of the following chapter. (The cd does read this chapter to you but does not give you the option to repeat those words.)
-The cd can really only be used after reading the chapter for extra study. I tried to use some of the lessons ahead of where I was in the book. (Only the next lesson, not far in advance.) And I found myself tongue tied.
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186 of 202 people found the following review helpful By Jason Baker on June 6, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The Living Language "Ultimate Spanish" taught **all** the verb tenses. This new series is not nearly as advanced and leaves out **all** the compound tenses such as the present perfect, so you will never learn how to say such basic things as "ya he comido" (I have already eaten). You will be able to say "I ate " instead of "I have eaten" so you will be able to make yourself understood, though you won't be able to understand when others use the perfect tenses. To it's credit at least it does teach the subjunctive mood, something courses like Fluenz,Rosetta Stone and Pimsleur all ignore which is a shame because it's very important. The lay out is nice and for what you learn it is well done, but for three books of material it's a shame you never learn any of the compound tenses Living Language used to teach . I would recommend Assimil Spanish instead , or if you are going the software route I recommend the whole Visual Link Spanish series.
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104 of 114 people found the following review helpful By Leslie on June 4, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have been teaching individuals (adults and children) foreign languages for over 20 years and have spent countless dollars on books and other learning materials that always fall short. FINALLY, I have materials I can use with older children, teens, and adults. The Living Languages materials (only this one - not other Living Language materials) are concise and thorough, with content organized in a logical fashion. Audio cds are a good supplement for learners to hear a native speaker. I use this material in conjunction with Rosetta Stone. Together, they provide a COMPLETE learning experience.
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Living Language Spanish, Complete Edition: Beginner through advanced course, including 3 coursebooks, 9 audio CDs, and free online learning
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