Le groupe français 2016 - 2019 Les Voyageurs

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Carmody
Brown Belt
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:21 pm

Upon scrambling up to B1 in French, I confess to not having discovered a really good grammar book.

French grammar books I own:

French Grammar, A Complete Reference Guide-too abbreviated
Bescherelle--conjugation only; too abbreviated
French Verbs and Essentials of Grammar by Simone Oudot-too abbreviated.
Essential French Grammar by Seymour Resnick-too abbreviated
French DeMystified by Annie Heminway-too abbreviated
The Ultimate French Review and Practice by Stillman and Gordon*

This last one is the best book I could find, but surely there is a better one that has greater depth and breadth.

Please tell me the best and most comprehensive French grammar book out there, because I definitely don’t know it.

Note: Everyone recommends highly:
Grammaire Progressive Du Francais: Niveau Debutant (French Edition)
or
Grammaire Progressive Du Francais - Nouvelle Edition: Livre Intermediaire 3e Edition + Cd-audio (Collec Progress) (French Edition) (French) by Gregoire (Author), Cle International (Editor)

But.......they are in French. I want something I can understand first in English in order to understand the French grammar.
Last edited by Carmody on Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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aravinda
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby aravinda » Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:29 am

First of all, congratulations! And your log makes for very interesting reading.
Second, a little clarification: My French skills are skewed towards reading, so most probably your overall level would be much higher than mine. I have leafed through many French grammars but the only one I used systematically was a now-out-of-print, smaller grammar by Teach Yourself.

As far as I know, French teachers’ favourite is the Le bon usage (“Grevisse”). It’s a hefty volume of some 1700 pages, so in my opinion, the abridged version, Le petit Grevisse would be a better option for us learners. I also like Nouvelle grammaire du français: Cours de Civilisation Française de la Sorbonne. There are a few other more comprehensive grammars but I haven’t examined them in detail.

In English, probably the most widely used are the following:
1. French Grammar and Usage (Routledge Reference Grammars)
2. A Comprehensive French Grammar (Blackwell Reference Grammars)
3. Modern French Grammar: A Practical Guide (Routledge)

All three books have accompanying workbooks, and the first one may be cheaper to buy as a pack with the workbook. As there are different editions be careful when you buy them especially with the first one which is frequently reissued.
I had some trouble embedding the links, so I have given all the links below. Maybe I will get back and fix them later. Sorry about that.

https://www.amazon.fr/Bon-usage-André-G ... +bon+usage

https://www.amazon.fr/Petit-Grevisse-Gr ... s=grevisse

https://www.amazon.fr/Nouvelle-grammair ... s+sorbonne

https://www.amazon.co.uk/French-Grammar ... +and+usage

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Comprehensive- ... ch+grammar

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Modern-French- ... ACA99V6CMG

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Grammar-Practi ... +and+usage
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Carmody
Brown Belt
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:34 am

Many thanks for all the good suggestions.

These books are not cheap!

Thank you.
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Mohave
Orange Belt
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 1:38 pm
Location: Florida, USA
Languages: English (Native),
French (enjoying and still learning the language)
Spanish (Beginner)
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Mohave » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:54 pm

The French Embassy tweeted out this list for #BookLoversDay of current best sellers (in French) and recently translated (in English) "romans de l'été", e.g., "beach reads" or "romans de gare" . There was one or two that I find tempting, and thought others may find the list of interest.

https://franceintheus.org/spip.php?article8694
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Spanish Motivation: Dec 2018 - Costa Rica
Spanish Pimsleur 3: 6 / 30 Assimil: 56 / 100
Spanish Super Challenge Books: 2 / 50 Movies: 0 / 100
French Super Challenge Books: 24 / 100 Movies: 22 / 100

My Goodreads

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smallwhite
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby smallwhite » Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:50 am

Carmody wrote:
The Ultimate French Review and Practice by Stillman and Gordon*

This last one is the best book I could find, but surely there is a better one that has greater depth and breadth.

What are some things you wanted to see but did not see in this book, depthwise and breadthwise?
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This post was written as a public service at no cost to readers.

Dialang or it didn't happen.

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Carmody
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:11 pm

Smallwhite

You are incredible. Your laser-like questions are nothing short of riveting. Thank you so much! Absolutely nothing passes you by. I really do learn from your questions. Also a note to say that given the fact that you are Black Belt - 1st Dan and I am only Blue Belt, B1 in my French, I realize I am on thin ice and will do my best to be respectful.

Where is my grammar book lacking? A totally fair question. Herewith some answers:

A brief summary:
French Grammar, A Complete Reference Guide-too abbreviated
Bescherelle--conjugation only; too abbreviated
French Verbs and Essentials of Grammar by Simone Oudot-too abbreviated.
Essential French Grammar by Seymour Resnick-too abbreviated
French DeMystified by Annie Heminway-too abbreviated
The Ultimate French Review and Practice by Stillman and Gordon*

The Ultimate French Review and Practice does more than the others, but does not cover material comprehensively enough for my needs if I were to go for B1 with DELF/DALF.
Examples:

-Chp. 25 lists Past Subjunctive, Literary Subjunctive as topics, but then literally ignores Literary Subjunctive within the chapter. Really; how fair is that?

-Chp. 10 does not cover the Pluperfect, Future Perfect; Conditional Perfect in the depth needed.

-Chp. 13 on nouns, ignores many of the rules needed for learning genders for French nouns.

-the different chapters on adjectives totally omit the rule that all adjectives of color should follow a noun.

-the book totally omits a discussion of how to handle past participles without auxilary verbs. If Bescherelle in all its few pages can touch on the topic than why can't this thicker book cover it.

It simply does not cover material comprehensively enough for my needs.

Fortunately, there are many websites to choose from:
Cliffsnotes
https://www.cliffsnotes.com/study-guides/french/french-ii
and many others like
Lawlessfrench
https://www.lawlessfrench.com/

However I am a book guy and need to underline and review constantly. I have to hold a book in my hands and make notes. It is just who I am. It is the reason you are Black Belt -1st Dan and I am only a Blue Belt.

I don’t want an encyclopedic book like Le Bon Usage, however if a book is to have a title of
The Ultimate French Review and Practice then it would seem fair to me to expect it to be more comprehensive, not necessarily encyclopedic.

Finally, and most importantly, I make no excuses for not getting higher marks in my tests. I am definitely not blaming the textbooks. Maybe there are more comprehensive grammar books out there, but I have not found them.There are certainly many magnificent websites to help with grammar, so, if I had a question then I should have tracked down the answer.

Do you think my expectations are unrealistic? You are the one with the expertise, not me.

Thanks as always for your guidance.
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smallwhite
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby smallwhite » Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:03 am

Carmody wrote:
The Ultimate French Review and Practice does more than the others, but does not cover material comprehensively enough for my needs if I were to go for B1 with DELF/DALF.

I consider Ultimate my B2 syllabus but then I look things up online as well. For a more advanced grammar I used A Comprehensive French Grammar (original author Glenville Price) which is more a reference than a textbook like Ultimate. I don't have access to Comprehensive now so I can't check if it covers the things you're after, but I remember it had many pages on the different noun gender endings.

Lawless often referenced Robert/Bon Usage kind of books (I don't remember the exact titles) when writing for About.com so her work on About.com and likely on LawlessFrench.com as well would be a good digested/filtered/simplified version of those books for a B2-ish audience.
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This post was written as a public service at no cost to readers.

Dialang or it didn't happen.

User avatar
Carmody
Brown Belt
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Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:00 am
Location: NYC, NY
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Language Log: http://tinyurl.com/zot7wrs
x 1974

Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Carmody » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:43 pm

Many thanks for the response.
Am very tempted to buy A Comprehensive French Grammar.
You thought it worthwhile?
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bretagne
White Belt
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby bretagne » Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:30 pm

Pronunciation Training?

Hi everyone - I have some questions about self-studying French pronunciation that I hope to get help with. I'm trying to find a good 'method' to getting my english mouth to get use to making french sounds. A big challenge is the r!

I've come resources such as:
  • Fluent Forever French Pronunciation Trainer
  • Olle Kjellin Repetition Method
  • 500 exercise de phonetique
  • Anne Le Grand on UDemy - 'Sound Like a Native'
  • Various YouTube videos

...and many more. My problem is that I become overwhelmed by the choice then struggle to pick one and stick with it.

Can anyone suggest how I could make use of 15-30 minutes per day to focus on pronunciation improvement? (This would form part of my present 2-3 hour french learning which consists of some TV & radio news, reading, assimil with ease and clozemaster).
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1: 666 / 10000 Clozemaster 10,000 French Fluency Fast Track Cards
2: 11 / 100 Assimil New French with Ease (100 lessons)

Speakeasy
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
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Languages: English (N), French (C2). Studying: Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Polish, and Russian; all with widely varying degrees of application, enthusiasm, and success.
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Re: Le groupe français 2016 - 2018 Les Voyageurs

Postby Speakeasy » Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:53 pm

bretagne, I suggest that you consider using the "FSI French Phonology course" as a supplement to your current studies. You may wish to refer to the discussion of this course from August, 2017.

FSI French Phonology course - LLORG - August, 2017
https://forum.language-learners.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&p=81384#p81384

FSI French Phonology course - Yojik website
https://fsi-languages.yojik.eu/languages/FSI/fsi-french-introduction-phonolgy.html

Vas-y, t'es capable!
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