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Teach Yourself to Read Hebrew Paperback – July 1, 1985
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A minor annoyance with the book is that they do not teach the names of the consonants and vowels. I easily get around this (for me) deficiency by using the excellent "Aleph-Bet Flash Cards", which I also highly recommend. For me, it is much easier to remember the shape of a vowel or a consonant if I have a name for it that I can memorize. So for example, the consonant named "Lamed" is for the "L" sound, so knowing its name makes it easier to remember its sound when I see that consonant written down.
All in all, this book in conjunction with its audiobook is first class and very carefully and thoughtfully and professionally done. The price is excellent for such an excellent product set.
UPDATE, MAY 31, 2016:
I finished this book last night and was able to transliterate the Kaddish prayer included at the end with almost no effort. If you want to learn how to read and pronounce Hebrew I cannot recommend this book enough! It does not teach any grammar beyond explaining why some of the marks are not pronounced because they are for grammatical purposes and not pronunciation. Though it is not a dictionary, it also teaches some popular words in Hebrew, such as camel, succot, shabbat, etc.
It is very much worth the time, money and effort to use this book. The lessons build on each other as you learn, and do so well. I am purchasing these for other people to learn or refresh their own ability to read/speak this beautifully powerful language.
Note : I devoted the majority of my time over two days learning this, which may not be feasible for people who do not have as much free time to devote to study as I do, so others may not necessarily be able to accomplish learning it that quickly, but I had a competition within myself to see if I could, as someone who was unable to read any Hebrew at all, learn to read it within 24-48 hours, and I did. Anyone else who is attentive, patient and diligent should be able to get through this book quickly.
The last page of the book states that after finishing all the lessons, you can read any prayer in the siddur. It suggests other books that will further your study, e.g., prayer book Hebrew or Biblical Hebrew. Though the publisher doesn't have modern Hebrew, the page states that after completing this book, you are ready for Modern Hebrew; and that books can be obtained from other booksellers.
However, I am disappointed. The book mentions accompanying tapes to ensure proper pronunciation. I checked, but the tapes are not available on the EKS web site BUT, what is available is another copy of this book with 3 accompanying CD's. If I'd known this before I ordered, I would have spent my money more wisely. I assumed that Amazon would have the latest edition.
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