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Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:19 pm
by samfrances
Time for a new challenge! I have been wanting to be able to read proper Spanish novels for years, and I have decided its time to just do it. So, for a year from now, my plan is to read no novels in English - only in Spanish. I have about an hour to an hour and half most evenings where I read, so that will be my time. I will start with graded readers, and try to work my way up to reading some of the classic novels I have always wanted to read.

Non-fiction books are allowed too, as long as they are in Spanish. (I do have to read some non-fiction books for work etc., so English non-fiction is not strictly banned.)

Along the way, I'll try to write some reviews in Spanish of each novel I read.

¡Deséame suerte!

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:51 pm
by samfrances
I'm starting with Short Stories in Spanish for Beginners by Olly Richards. I'm a bit rusty, so this will be a good warm up!

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Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 9:25 am
by samfrances
Any recommended reads for a rusty B1/2 will be very much appreciated, by the way. :D

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 9:38 am
by Mista
My best recommendation would be to start with something you have already read in English, preferably something that you would enjoy reading again, and that isn't too complicated (focusing on the story rather than longwinded descriptions, philosophical musings, etc.). After that, you could try another book by the same author.

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 9:46 am
by tungemål
Hi! We are maybe at the same level.

The only novel I have read in Spanish is El Alquimista by Paulo Coelho. It is a good first novel to read as it is short and the language is not difficult. I enjoyed the story.

I have read 60% of the book on Magellans journey by Laurence Bergreen, translated into Spanish. I intend to finish this one this summer.

Other novels I have on my list. I don't really read that much fiction, so this is a list of books from which I might read a couple:

- something by Isabel Allende: I have heard that her writing is not too hard, but don't know if it is true.
- Ildefonso Falcones - La catedral del mar (historical novel)
- Umberto Eco: El nombre de la rosa (historical novel)
- Carlos Ruiz Zafón: La sombra del viento
- Hemmingway in Spanish. Probably not too difficult.
- Jorge Luis Borges: The Aleph or La biblioteca de Babel (fantastical short stories)

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:55 pm
by jmar257
Mista wrote:My best recommendation would be to start with something you have already read in English, preferably something that you would enjoy reading again, and that isn't too complicated (focusing on the story rather than longwinded descriptions, philosophical musings, etc.). After that, you could try another book by the same author.

Totally agree with this, I have trouble reading stuff that may be easier but is something I wouldn't be interested in in English. Luckily stuff like LingQ/Kindle/LWT can help bridge that gap between what you can read and what you want to read, once you start getting used to the words used in a genre you start picking up speed.

What type of nonfiction do you read? That's something I want to start getting into in Spanish, until now I've read one nonfiction with most of the rest of what I've read being action thriller type books.

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 4:24 pm
by samfrances
jmar257 wrote:
Mista wrote:What type of nonfiction do you read? That's something I want to start getting into in Spanish, until now I've read one nonfiction with most of the rest of what I've read being action thriller type books.


For work its books on computer programming. In my spare time, I guess its mostly popular science or history. So, most recently I read Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari, for example. I guess it might be worth a look in translation. Sapiens might be even better, actually.

Although in general I find the subject matter difficult enough in popular science books without an extra layer of linguistic difficulty too! :D

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 5:18 pm
by jmar257
samfrances wrote:For work its books on computer programming. In my spare time, I guess its mostly popular science or history. So, most recently I read Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari, for example. I guess it might be worth a look in translation. Sapiens might be even better, actually.

Although in general I find the subject matter difficult enough in popular science books without an extra layer of linguistic difficulty too! :D

Ah, those two books have been on my to-read list for a while. I tried Taleb's Black Swan in Spanish, and it wasn't too difficult, but I had just reread it in English and I have a background in the subject matter. I didn't keep on because I don't like reading ebooks if I can avoid it.

I'll definitely be following this thread for recommendations...reading has been a huge boon to my Spanish progress.

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Fri Jun 19, 2020 8:18 am
by pinkyslippers
I'm looking forward to reading your reviews as you go. I'm not at the level where I can read 'proper' novels in Spanish yet, if you know what I mean, but I am working my way through all the Agatha Christie novels as part of the Super Challenge and enjoying it so far :)

Re: Sam's Year of Reading Only Spanish

Posted: Fri Jun 19, 2020 10:27 am
by samfrances
For a bit of variety, I'm going to add this as well:

El mundo en español

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