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Mixed blessing for anyone who loves foreign languages and wants to learn them. Grammar books. Some people couldn’t live without a grammar book at hand and others who try to avoid them like the plague by using different material types. I must say that I don’t fall into any categories, I’m halfway though I’m inclined towards the lovers of grammar books. So today, as you can see, we are talking about this. Materials for learning grammar in written form. I’ll divide them into categories based on the languages I’m studying. The materials that I’ll present to you are in Italian, English, Spanish and French.

  • English
    New Total English Advanced Students’ Book + Workbook: With these two books you aren’t facing the classic grammar book full of rules that tells you what to do and how to do it. Here we focus mainly on exercises and practice. The books are divided into sections and each one deals with a different topic, including power, nature and feelings. Each section, in turn, is divided into groups of exercises. Those that focus on the actual grammar, those most likely to improve vocabulary, listening or speaking. At the end of each section, there is always a page of grammar in which the main points that have been seen in the aforementioned section are treated. The books are in English.
  • Spanish
    C de C1: Of this book there is not much to say. Very similar to the English one, it focuses mainly on practice and exercises. Divided into themes, it tackles them trying to work on every aspect of the language, grammar, writing, reading and comprehension of the text and much more. Unlike the English one, however, the grammar cards with the main points are not found at the end of each topic but in the last pages of the book. The aforementioned book is in Spanish.
    Grammatica Spagnola: And here it is the real grammar book. Filled with rules and exceptions, it covers every aspect of the language. It ranges from the explanation in the first chapters of the phonetic-phonological system to the formation of words in the last chapter. In the middle, you can find everything. From verbs to constructions, passing through quantifiers, pronouns, possessives and lots of other stuff. This is for me the grammar book for the Spanish language. Written in Italian it is full of examples that make you immediately understand how a certain rule works and in what context it should be used. The only flaw that can be found is that there are no exercises, in fact, it’s a book made up solely of grammatical rules. If studied rigorously it can lead you to take the first steps in the language to master the various rules. As far as the practice is concerned, I advise you to rely on the book I mentioned above.
  • French
    Grammatica Francese, manuale di morfologia e sintassi con esercizi: I could define this book as halfway between the structures of the two Spanish ones. In fact, it doesn’t deal only with grammar or exercises. In this book both things can be found and this, I believe, is its strongest point in fact to every grammatical subject treated correspond a determined number of exercises. In this way one can immediately notice if the rules of the studied unit have been learned. The entire first part of the book is focused on teaching the basics of French grammar, while the second part contains the exercises whose answers are found on the last pages. The book is written in Italian.
    Instant Francese: Learn French while having fun. I believe this is the goal of the people behind this book, in fact despite dealing with grammar the book is very easy. We aren’t faced with the classic brick full of rules and therefore appears cold. On the contrary, it seems that we’re talking to a friend who tells us step by step how the French language is built. Full of examples and exercises thrown between a page and another I think it would be useful to anyone who is approaching the French language but wants to take it more comfortably without heaviness. The book is in Italian.
    Exercise de Grammaire Française pour Italophones: As the name suggests it is a book of exercises only. There is no grammar or anything else, only practical exercises to apply those rules that have been studied on other materials. Divided into categories based on the topic they are used for, the exercises are of various kinds, including translation exercises from Italian into French. The only flaw is that the solutions to the exercises are not in the book itself but should be taken on the site indicated. The book, as you may have guessed, is completely in French.

And you? Are you passionate about grammar books or do you prefer alternative materials? Let me know in the comments and if you have other books to suggest I am here to listen to you.

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