Customer Reviews: Colloquial Spanish of Latin America (Colloquial Series)
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on May 20, 2006
For my situation this product is great. I have been a pitiful excuse for a spanish major. Though i have studied in class,i still have very little ability to communicate verbally in Spanish. I checked this book/Tape series out at my library ONLYA WEEK AGO. The tapes work to connect my full brain in Spanish. I do have a certain familiarity with the language already. But have found myself unable to use the knowledge. I can see that if i had this long ago, i would be much more coherent in Spanish, and be of a mind to be able to quickly reply in spanish, when spoken to. I wish i would have had it long ago.
The book,i see, is very comprehensive, and clear, and well laid out. It appears to cover what you need without a lot of extras to get lost in. Better than any textbook i've ever seen. For someone taking a class in Spanish, or who has studied in the past in a class or on their own, this is a great tool. IF you have no understanding of Spanish whatsoever, I would advise you to begin somewhere else, or if you are a beginner who is serious about speaking it,perhaps incorporate this book/tape series with another more basic learning tool. The first half of side one tape one is very very very basic, then after that it is more for the intermediate student as i am. There is no in between level in this course. It should not be for the complete beginner as it was created for, at least not on it's own. However, for my purposes,I like it, and the price is very cheap. I spent over 200 dollars on another course, and i find this inexpensive one has helped me much more in the one week i've had it,than in the year i've had the other,much more boring course. A note: I do have to utilize my pause button frequently when i am participating with the tape. For this reason it is not a good "learn in the car" resource, unless you are particularly good at hearing spoken spanish. But, it is NOT necesary to use the book to benefit from the tape,provided you are not a complete beginner. THis is nice, because sometimes i am too lazy to read while listening. One disapointment is that there are only two tapes included.
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VINE VOICEon May 21, 2003
This book get 5 star for a number of reasons, but the main reason its near and dear to my heart is because it actually address things like email addresses and other technology and how they translate in spanish, None of my other book on learing spanish devote any time to things like e-mail. Being that I work in I.T. in a city that is around 75% hispanic I find this to be a nice touch.
The Tapes are nice, and the book is well laid out. I recomend it to fill in all the gaps that spanish 'textbooks' have.
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on March 24, 2009
I've used this book twice now for trips to Mexico, going through most of the written exercises from Chapters 1-13 a few times, and I highly recommend it. I also purchased the CDs, but never really used them much as I didn't find them too practical for actually learning to speak/understand Spanish.

What this book will do: give you a good basic grounding in all the key grammar and structures of Latin American Spanish, help you in learning to read and write colloquial Latin American Spanish and have basic conversations, give you a good grounding in key vocabulary (traveling, writing emails, using the computer, shopping, renting hotel rooms, etc). It's well structured and well organized, but it's paced so quickly that I found it hard to retain some of what I learned--I ended up creating flash cards and doing some of the exercises repeatedly to make them sink in better.

It's also a great reference and supplement to other language-learning programs (the one I have used with the most success is the excellent Fluenz Spanish 1+2 Learning Suite Mac, Including DVDs, Audio CDs, Podcasts, and Fluenz Navigator. Next-Generation Spanish Language Learning Software.) As the title suggests, the book takes a conversational approach--the kind of real-life language you need in actual situations.

What this book won't do: give you much practice in spoken Spanish (understanding, pronouncing and speaking it yourself). Still, I found it very useful!
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on November 26, 2009
This book covers all the basics to help get you to intermediate level.

Some of the things it covers:
present tense (I work.)
present continuous (I am working.)
preterit (I worked.)
imperfect past (I have worked.)
future (I will work.)
[(voy) + a + infinitive] future tense (I am going to work.)
subjunctive mood
giving commands
reflexive pronouns
vocabulary of things like email, etc.

If you are starting from scratch, you should get another course to supplement because this course moves pretty fast and you may get discouraged. Even if you're not start starting from scratch, I still recommend another course to supplement. There are short dialogues with accompanying audio and written exercises; however, you should get something that allows you to get more practice listening and speaking.

Also, I've found some words were not glossed. The Spanish-English and English-Spanish glossaries are not exact matches. There are less words in the English-Spanish glossary than the other one.

There's 120 mins of audio, 60 mins on each CD. One thing I don't like about the audio is that the narrator speaks in a really boring Ben Stein voice. He should have sounded more conversational.
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on April 21, 2011
As a teacher I have used this book for classroom instruction. I highly recommend the Routledge Colloquial Series for learning practical use of any language, though this book has fallen below the standard of most other books in the series. A large number of the texts are difficult for students to relate to. (Inflation, government announcements, etc. that have little practical use for a student who wants to learn to communicate in everyday life) The order of some of the lessons is hard to follow (learning present perfect and present perfect continuous before learning past tense for example) and in many instances precious little detail is given about grammatical structure. I recommend Routledge Colloquial Spanish by Untza Otaola Alday over this book. Spanish spoken in Spain is close enough that there shouldn't be any significant issue, and Untza's book is much better structured and easier to relate to. Colloquial Spanish (Colloquial Series (Multimedia))
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on February 22, 2012
This is a good course for focusing on Latin American Spanish without any Castilian whatsoever!!! Also be sure to get the follow-up course to this one; which is Colloquial Spanish of Latin America: The Next Step.
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on January 4, 2007
I find this book great as I am learning South American Spanish, not Spanish from Spain. My teacher, who is from Argentina, also has purchased this book and is using it with other students who are learning Spanish to be used in Latin America.
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on January 6, 2015
I purchased the combination eBook and MP3 pack in early December. I received the eBook flawlessly through Amazon, but the MP3 pack is a separate item and there are instructions in the eBook on how to obtain it, basically just sending an email to a specific address and providing proof of purchase. I have sent numerous email to the provided email address with proof of purchase and have not received any response whatsoever. The publisher obviously has problems fulfilling their promises. Purchase this product at risk of receiving only half of the product.
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on November 15, 2015
Extremely fast shipping from US to Slovenia in extremely well condition! Thank you very much Amazon! Considering the book I'll be able to write adequate review after finnishing language course. First impression is great. Arsome that it starts with basic e mail expressions and with (not so big but) important defferencies between Spanish and Latin American Spanish grammatical features and words. For example, I didn't know, that some basic expressions, like "the boy" or "the girl" are different in Mexico ("chamaco/chamaca"), Peru ("chiquillo/chiquilla") and in Argentina ("pibe/piba") apart from classical Spanish "el niño/el niña". Obviously great starter for someone who wants to dive deaper in Latin American Spanish!
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on January 10, 2016
Great book for people who really want a comprehensive book on grammar with good exercises and examples. This book pretty much lays out all the types of tenses and sentence structures you will need in everyday conversations (the book also points out differences between Latin American and the Spanish from Spain). I have the kindle version so I don't have the audio portion so I can't comment of that but even if you're just reading through the book and working on the exercises it is a good place to start once you begin speaking and want to expand on what you already know and want to learn more. The only thing which I would assume is only present in the kindle version is you have to watch out sometimes because whoever converted this to the digital form made some typos that somehow made it through, its not a crazy amount but enough to take notice to.
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