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Review of Practicing HSK Grammar


Tianjin42
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As part of Sinolingua’s very generous book giveaway I will review “Practicing HSK Grammar”. Thanks kindly to both Sinolingua and also Chinese-forums.

 

Description:

The book is a fairly hefty review of grammar that you would encounter in HSK materials. It is larger than A4 and weighs in at over 250 pages. It offers a thorough, systematic review of Chinese grammar and contains many examples with explanations. The book is divided into 11 chapters, each dealing with a particular aspect of grammar (e.g. Preposition, Conjunction etc.).

 It also contains a mock HSK exam.

 

My View:

I was actually quite impressed by this book. It is dense and covers a lot of ground in details. The original explanations are fairly clear and extremely thorough. Adverbs, for example begins with 15 pages of examples of adverb use, each adverb and its usage explained carefully. This is followed by 100 questions which are in turn followed by one paragraph explanations for each answer. This model is followed for each chapter.

 

Faults:

The book could be presented in a more accessible way but for serious learners I don’t think that this would be an issue. The book is ostensibly for “Elementary to Intermediate Examinees” but I feel it would benefit higher level learners, especially those who are writing extended pieces of text.

 

The Chinese view:

My Chinese colleague says “looks like a school text book to me – I would struggle with a few questions”. He went on “this would probably be useful to write formal pieces”.

 

Conclusion:

The book is much more useful than its title and blurb suggests. Though much information about grammar can be found for free, here it is presented with numerous examples and explanations that should assist usage. 

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