In Learners By Catherine

To read or not to read: that is the question. Like what books to read in English

That’s how modern life is that we have to read at least 3,000 characters of text of a new day. Someone get untold pleasure from reading an interesting article or book, for someone — it is simply vital. Earlier entries in our school, we wrote how well reading books in English affects the overall progress of language learning.

  • We examined in detail the reasons why you need to come to grips with reading in English, in the article «5 reasons to read books in English.»
  • From the huge list of all kinds of books we have chosen those that are worth reading, and told how to make your choice in the article «What books to read in English. How to read them. »
  • We stopped separately on each type of reading the article «Types of reading in English. Read efficiently. »

In theory, everything seems rosy and very interesting, but in practice we are often faced with unfamiliar words, complicated text and constant desire to read it later «until Monday.» To avoid this, you must choose a book according to your interests and language level.

I was fortunate to be engaged with the person who has a positive attitude to the process of reading in English and safely finish the work started before the end. I present you an interview with a student of mine, Victor, who happily agreed to share their ideas about reading in English.

Catherine: Hello, Victor. I am very glad that you have agreed to share their experiences of language learning with our readers. To begin? Tell me, why, and when you decide to start reading books in the original?

Victor: The first time I tried to read the book in the original language while studying at university. It was part of the job for a semester — read any fiction book and write a review on it. To me it was interesting to enrich your vocabulary and fixed expressions turns of phrase, not typical for textbooks, but is ubiquitous in living speech. Unfortunately, this experience was tedious and caused no interest in reading in the original. I returned to this venture only a few years later, when I began to deal with a personal trainer.

Catherine: What books do you read lately?

Victor: One of the last works I’ve read, — «Lullaby» («Lullaby») Palahniuk and «The Firm» («Company») John Grisham.

Catherine: Victor, it’s pretty serious literature. How do you assess your level of English?

Victor: You could say that I was between Upper-Intermediate and Advanced. But if I were a native English speaker, called this literature seriously, I could not. Still, this kind of detective story or a thriller — a fiction, mostly time-killer for travel to and from work. But for the student of English reading these books in the original can be a major test.

Catherine: Share a secret how you approach the issue of choice of a book? Is it important to you that this is American or British author and not the translation, for example, French literature into English?

Victor: The approach to the choice of books is based on said I wish to draw more than a living modern language of the dialogues of heroes and the author of the narrative. For me it is very important to read the literature written in the original is in American English. That’s because I’m a big fan of American culture: from obscure music groups and movements to the cult TV series such as «Breaking Bad» («Breaking Bad»), evening shows Stephen Colbert and comics of Spider-Man. And to learn English, I use all of these sources.

Catherine: Is it important for you to discuss with old friend or a teacher?

Victor: A retelling read in their own words, of course, helps to consolidate in a speech new momentum. The discussion in this case, it is important not as an argument, or an exchange of views, but as a practice to memorize new words.

Catherine: I know that you also read the professional literature in English. Is there a difference in approach to reading professional literature and fiction?

Victor: Yes, the professional literature I read almost every day, and the amount of reading material exceeds the volume on the order of art. Professional literature is much more severe in the sense of language. Vocabulary used, though specific, but familiar in the art. So read such literature is much easier. It has no adjectives or metaphors.

Catherine: Do you get pleasure from reading the original literature?

Victor: Of course. I usually read on public transport on the way to work and back that allows for that half-hour on the road almost invisible and do not get bored.

Catherine: Many English learners faced with an abundance of unfamiliar words in the text that makes throw the book at the beginning or at the half. Have you ever considered the complexity of reading fiction, and how you deal with them?

Victor: Initially, I tried not to leave without a transfer of any unfamiliar words on the page, constantly looking in the dictionary, if even a little doubt in the meaning of a word or phrase. It bothered me quickly. The pleasure of reading was not enough. Therefore, over time, I began to miss the unfamiliar words, trying to regain their sense of context and repeated references in the text. Things went much better reading speed increased, a sense strand of the plot, when you do not want to throw the book at bedtime, without knowing the next scene interchanges. True, there are pitfalls. It is not always possible to restore the true meaning of the words out of context, or can assume the opposite meaning and misunderstood the story or idea. So sometimes it’s still worth check their guesses with the dictionary.

Catherine: Does your reading to improve knowledge of English?

Victor: I think reading is just one of many ways to improve a language, while important enough to spend it at least mute their free time.

Catherine: And finally, Viktor, please give some advice on how to better and more efficient to read books in the original language.

Victor: I can recommend modern technology: tablets and e-books. As a rule, many programs for reading books it is possible to install a plugin that shows the translation of any word, but also allows you to save it in the dictionary for the further repetition and learning. The ability to quickly, without looking up from the text, learn the meaning of new words will relieve you from the discomfort and make a quick and interesting read.

Catherine: Thank you, Victor, for having shared their experiences. In turn, I would like to wish all of you success, have fun and enjoy the process of reading literature.



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