Essential Spanish

Book Review



Essential Spanish


Nicole Irving and  Leslie Colvin


EDC Publishing, Tulsa, OK



Reviewed By:

Frank Fogg

Review Date:

July, 2001


Essential Spanish is a phrasebook targeted to middle school  students of the Spanish language. This book is a color paperback of 64 pages.

The content of this guide focuses on the words, phrases  and slang of Spanish as it is spoken in Spain (not Latin America). The book  is organized in sections based on themes. Some of these themes include obtaining accommodations, dining, traveling, shopping, and emergency situations.

Get more information about Essential Spanish at Amazon.comEach section includes a cartoon strip that demonstrates sample conversations in Spanish.  A box is placed with essential words relating to the section theme along with their Spanish translation. Scattered throughout the book are smaller "Fact  file" text boxes with cultural information about Spain and its people.  A page at the beginning lists essential vocabulary needed to communicate in  Spanish, while a complete listing of words and phrases appears in an index at  the end of the book. Another section uses several pages to cover the most important  elements of the Spanish grammar including the uses of ser and estar, how verbs  are used, nouns, plurals, and adjectives.

The cartoon format of this guide is likely to appeal to the teenaged audience for which it is targeted. A large variety of topics, words and phrases are covered, providing a handy reference for studying Spanish as it is used in everyday situations. The book also includes two pages of slang  expressions that are useful and relevant, yet appropriate for children of all ages. The content is organized with translations alphabetically organized in English, making translation from Spanish to English a little difficult, and  its size is a little too large to conveniently carry in a shirt or jacket pocket,  but the strength of this guide is the scope of its content.

Essential Spanish provides an opportunity for young students of Spanish to improve their vocabulary and conversational skills in situations they are likely to encounter when traveling. The colorful cartoon format will appeal to children and keep their interest. The content covers the most important elements of the Spanish language and gives the reader an improved vocabulary of useful words and phrases.

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