Looking for a good text/practice book


I’m looking for something to practice things such as forming sentences and grammar rules.
Because I’ve already got Wanikani, I don’t want something that has a heavy focus on learning kanji but that utilizes them.
It would be great if it does give you tasks to complete to have stuff that I can write down.

Got any good recommendations for me?
Language to learn from can either be English or German, depending on which one has got better options.

Thank you very much!

Genki I and II are popular self-study textbooks in English, although they can be a bit expensive. They use a bit of kanji, although beginner textbooks in English will use less than you know probably. The workbooks have plenty of practice. If you need it for self-assessment, the answer key is separate but covers Genki I and II both workbook and main book. You could try to buy the textbook used.

The other popular one around here is Minna no Nihongo. A main point of difference is that it uses Japanese explanations, although there’s a separate English translation. It’s immersive in that way. It also has the point in its favour that you won’t have to always be going through three languages if you don’t want to. I don’t know how much it actually utilises kanji, not having a copy myself. Genki is typically said to be more beginner-friendly, but that may be because it has a lot of English.

Both have workbooks for lots of practice. Minna no Nihongo has a whole bunch of different workbooks for each type of exercise. So you could skip the kanji workbook but get the grammar and reading-related ones, I guess?

There are of course other options I know less about.

You could search the forum for people’s thoughts on these. ‘Genki vs. Minna no Nihongo’ or similar will yield a lot of results, as well as keywords about textbooks, 'cause there are options outside of those (and I don’t speak German)

Here is a great article about it… there’re lots of textbooks so a good comparision on the available options probably is better than what a single person could tell you from a limited exposition to a single book (my case was with Genki 1… an my opinion would be … meh :man_shrugging:… I’m glad I did’t went with the second book)

Thank you so much for your thorough answer!

I will have a look into those two and see which one would suit me better.

Would amazon be the best place to get them or do you reckon there are better options?

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Thank you very much for the article!
After reading that, I think I’ll go for Minna No Nihongo, seems like a good option :slight_smile:

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Amazon seems like a fine place, especially if you want them used. If you’re going new, do a little price shopping just in case, but the difference won’t be much between Amazon, Booktopia, BookDepositoty, etc. Bookstores will be more expensive if anything.

MnN does seem like the better option for what you want. :slight_smile:

I’ve been using Genki as well.

One thing that you may appreciate for Minna no Nihongo is that you can get the translation key in German instead of English. I think the multilingual translation key is one of the main reasons why it’s a particularly popular series of textbooks in non-English speaking countries.

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I don’t know where you’re located, but at least in the US, ordering textbooks from Amazon JP is usually cheaper than getting then from Amazon US, even after shipping charges. Cheaper than White Rabbit and the like, too.

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Honestly I really don’t mind learning from English, that’s what I’ve been doing up to now anyway, thanks to wanikani.

I’m currently in Canada and I will check Amazon JP! Thanks.

What I may need to specify a bit more is that I’m not really looking for long explainations and the sorts.
I do already own a grammar book and have read through that, I’m mostly looking for something that contains lots of Exercises. Like a workbook.

Also can someone exlain how MnN “works” to me?
When I check Amazon it seems a little confusing because apparently there is the Textbook, a translation, a grammar book, a workbook and a kanji exercise book.
Which ones would you recommend me getting? And which do I need?

Thanks a lot, you have been very helpful so far :slight_smile:

if you want a really hard core drill workbook then 活用ドリル published by bonjinsha is the business.
You can get it from White Rabbit.

That sounds interesting.
Anything I need to know?

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