My history with this book.
The first book that I ever read while trying to learn Norwegian was Teach Yourself Complete Norwegian. A colleague had found the book at a library and I happened to stumble upon it at my workplace in Oslo.
What is included with this book?
Teach Yourself Complete Norwegian includes a book and two audio CD. You can also buy only the paperback book or the audio CD. But my personal recommendation is to buy both as your learning will be incomplete without listening to the CD. If you read your books on the Kindle e-reader, there is also a Kindle Version of the book though I have never used it so read the reviews before you buy it.
What are the contents of the book?
The book begins with a guide for the pronunciation of the Norwegian alphabets. There is also help to learn the pronunciation on the audio CD which I found to be very useful instead of just reading from the book.
The book is divided into 16 lessons each based on everyday life conversations in Norwegian.
|2||Jeg vil gjerne…||I would like to…|
|3||På vei til Norge||On the way to Norway|
|4||Sightseeing i||Oslo Sightseeing in Oslo|
|5||Sue går til byen||Sue goes into town|
|8||Sue er på sykehus||Sue is in hospital|
|9||Sue får jobb||Sue gets a job|
|11||God Jul! Godt Nyttår!||Happy Christmas! Happy New Year!|
|14||Syttende mai||Seventeenth of May|
|15||Sankt Hans||Eve of St John|
|16||Hva nå?||What now?|
At the end you can find the key to the exercises, some grammar and some vocabulary.
What is in each chapter of the book?
The main reason I enjoyed reading this book was the way the chapters are organised. Each chapter of the book begins with an English summary of what you are going to learn in that chapter. For example, in the first chapter, you will learn:
- How to greet people
- How to introduce yourself
- How to form simple statements and questions
- How to form simple negative statements
The chapter is then divided into 3 dialogues. Mostly these are everyday conversations between two characters, Arne who is from Bergen and Sue who is from London. On a page where the dialogue starts, there is a pointer to the dialogue on the audio CD (CD1, TR3). This means that you can listen to the dialogue when you play the track 3 on the CD No. 1. This is really great to hear the correct Norwegian pronunciation.
At the end of each dialogue there is a vocabulary list with Norwegian words that are used for the first time along with their English translation.
This section tests how much you understood from the dialogue by asking questions that need to be answered true or false.
At the end of the dialogue there is also an insight section where the author shares useful expressions, phrases and tips for learning Norwegian.
This is how we say it
This section mentions the expressions that are used in the dialogues and are commonly used in Norwegian conversations.
This section provides grammar lessons based on the dialogues of the chapter. Note that this book does not teach comprehensive Norwegian grammar but only covers the basics.
Do you understand?
This section of the chapter will test how much of the dialogues you have understood. Here you are given a dialogue with a Norwegian person and your part of the dialogue is in English. You need to translate it into Norwegian. If you need help you can refer the Key to the exercises at the end of the book.
One of the best sections of this book is exercises. Here you get to test your Norwegian skills by question/answers, filling the blanks, word search and more. I would recommend that you do not skip this section when you are learning from this book. It will greatly help in your understanding of the chapter. If you have trouble with the answers you can refer the Key to the exercises at the end of the book.
What I liked about this book?
- The author is well experienced in teaching Norwegian to beginners.
- Good organisation of content.
- Interesting lessons based on everyday conversations.
- Excellent audio support that aids listening to correct Norwegian pronunciation.
What I did not like about this book?
- There are sufficient grammar lessons for beginners but this is not a comprehensive book on grammar.
Would I recommend this book to you?
If you are a beginner in learning Norwegian, I would recommend Teach Yourself Complete Norwegian as the best book available to start learning. It has a good organisation of content and interesting lessons that helped me to quickly learn how to read, write and understand Norwegian conversations and I am sure it will help you too.
Disclosure: I will only review products that I have personally used and feel would be the most beneficial to learners. This review is my honest opinion of the product. If you do buy this book from a link in the post then I will get a small commission that will help support this website and I thank you for it 🙂