- Paperback: 144 pages
- Publisher: Kodansha International; Reprint edition (January 25, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 156836492X
- ISBN-13: 978-1568364926
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.4 x 7.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 87 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Making Sense of Japanese: What the Textbooks Don't Tell You Reprint Edition
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"It is safe to say that Making Sense of Japanese is probably the best money you could invest in your quest to master Japanese."
"Brief, wittily written essays that gamely attempt to explain some of the more frustrating hurdles [of Japanese].... They can be read and enjoyed by students at any level."
—Asahi Evening News
About the Author
JAY RUBIN is a professor of Japanese literature at Harvard University, where he has employed the pedagogical techniques contained in Making Sense of Japanese "as infrequently as possible." He has authored Injurious to Public Morals: Writers and the Meiji State and Haruki Murakami and the Music of Words, edited Modern Japanese Writers, and translated Soseki Natsume's Sanshiro and The Miner and Haruki Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Norwegian Wood, and After the Quake (Knopf and Harvill, 2002).
Top customer reviews
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"Making Sense of Japanese: What the Textbooks Don't Tell You" is bridge, spanning the gap from Advanced Beginner to Intermediate, dealing with all the barriers at that level. Using humor and a clear insight into the language, Rubin explains the minor issues that, while seemingly tiny, are the difference between fluency and gibberish.
The only drawback is that the book is perhaps a bit too small. Rubin's explanations are clear but brief, and could soon be forgotten. Most of the important bits require re-reading, and a serious student will probably pull "Making Sense of Japanese" off the shelf quite a few times when encountering something. Beefing the tiny tome up with some exercises and quizzes would help solidify Rubin's points, making it even more useful than it already is.
As it stands, I would qualify this book as "essential" to Japanese learners at a certain level. Raw beginners probably won't get much out of it, but to Advanced Beginners/Intermediate learners, it will be exactly what they need.