- Paperback: 96 pages
- Publisher: Hide This; Bilingual edition (August 25, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9812464298
- ISBN-13: 978-9812464293
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.3 x 8.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,228,794 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hide This French Book Bilingual Edition
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“…Things you might really want to say and…need to say…hip, young, and irreverent.” – Chicago Tribune Online
“…An utter delight for the hip traveler.” – New York Daily News
About the Author
In January 2003, the renowned Berlitz Publishing became part of the Langenscheidt Group. The Langenscheidt Publishing Group, the premier group of map and travel companies, offers over 4,000 North American and international street maps, road maps, atlases, language-learning, bilingual dictionaries, and travel-related products covering countries, cities, and languages in every continent.
Top customer reviews
Though, you might want to take the book's title to heart, do what it says, and hide that book. There are some...unsavory words and phrases that might offend someone if they are reading over your shoulder. Not to mention the cover is a little conspicuous.
Altogether, though, I liked this book as it was useful and provided my friends and I with a few laughs.
Especially geared towards students and those of us who want to know evolving street speak, Berlitz actually prints a two page disclaimer as a preface warning French speaking wannabes that some of the language cited in the book is to be used sparingly and in familiar company that will not judge you as crude.
With this in mind, the author, Eve-Alice Roustang-Stoller demarcates the crudest, rudest and crassest of her lingual tidbits using fetching forewarning icons of thermometers depicted as either with the mercury at a spicy half-way point to label the pretty vulgar or with the mercury bursting to the way-too-hot overspill point to indicate the totally offensive. Thankfully and shame-savingly, she provides gender symbol icons to inform the reader when a phrase is to be used only when describing a particular sex and a website where one can actually hear the correct pronunciation.
The book covers a wide spectrum of situations beginning with the basic greeting expressions, and moving through dating, love, sex, homosexual life, sports, games, shopping, fashion, body parts, technology, gossiping, food, partying, friendship, entertainment and ending with 6 ultimate French gestures. Sidebars like "Un-Censored" (the really vulgar skinny), "Oops" ("I cant' believe I said that" embarrassing stories), "the Scoop" (what you need to know to stay in the know) and "Fact" (cultural similarities and differences) along with cartoon-like illustrations interject a little eye-moving fun into the fast-paced format.
Published in 2004, the language in this book proves to be up-to-date when inspected by a 30-something native French speaker. The only caveat? Obviously, a fifty-year old speaks differently than a fifteen year old; language used in a club differs greatly from that at the dinner table. The language in HTFB most definitely can be offensive when used in the wrong situation and by the wrong person. Perhaps les gros mots don't attract much attention until a non-French person makes use of them, so my tip is to be careful as you expand your language range.
Bottom line: Recommended, but depending on your age and the situation, use with the utmost care. "Tune Up Your French" by Natalie Schorr provides a more thorough treatment of the whens and whys of slang usage, but this books format is sure to have more eye appeal for a student.
Other works on French slang casually present phrases that may offend native speakers so as to humor English-speaking readers. For example, one would not approach an attractive person and exclaim, "Quelle cul t'as!" (Toned-down meaning: "What buttocks you have!"). Indeed, a less extreme pick-up would most likely be in order. This being said, the book certainly presents its wealth of phrases and idioms in an amusing fashion, but it singles out ones that particularly are not appropriate in everyday conversation.
Along with ratings and online resources, Roustang-Stoller dashes her book with sidebars about French culture and gives the reader conversational examples. Thereby, the active reader can not only master the phrases but apply them appropriately. I just lent my friend this guide on his school trip to France, and he said that it came in handy numerous times. Even if you speak school-taught French perfectly, it really helps to know conversational slang for real-life situations. So, if you don't know a lick of French and want to get a few laughs, or you are a high school student in French V AP who is traveling to Paris in the near future, this book is perfect for you!