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heqi_liegou

Something to read with a daily life vocabulary? (HSK6 at halfway level)

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heqi_liegou

I have already read Chinese Graded Reader 2 and the other titles in series have smaller vocabulary, so I am not interested in them.

 

With my vocabulary I am currently at the the halfway (progressing in the order of frequency) of HSK6 (and I know words from the earlier HSKs) and in addition to newspaper and research articles I think I need some material to read which has words used in a daily life situations and communication. It needs to be a text media.

 

Any ideas what it could be?

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Basil

HSK6 is really high isn't it? You should be easily able to start reading novels now.

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Silent

Not really sure what you call "daily life situations and communication" as vocabulary used is strongly dependent on lifestyle and interests. I do however agree with Basil that novels is probably the way to go. Specially if you are selective about subject and setting.

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heqi_liegou

Being at the halfway of HSK6 gives me roughly 2200 characters (for Newspaper around 3000 is required and a well educated Chinese person knows around 4000-6000). Taking also other problems related to reading Chinese in account, a full length novel does not feel like a good choice. Some short stories I could maybe consider trying. I have not yet idea how big the gap is between Graded Reader 2 & non-abridged fictional literature.

 

I am not doing actual HSK tests (have not practiced handwriting yet), so there is no reason to limit myself to HSK materials.

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edelweis

If you take a modern novel like 圈子圈套, and if you don't insist on understanding every word of it, it's not really that hard to follow the story and enjoy the book.

 

Anyway, if you want short, varied, graded articles you can try the uiowa reading collections, they have three levels:

http://collections.uiowa.edu/chinese/topic_beginning.html

 

If you want some dialogues, you could subscribe to a podcast service like ChinesePod or imandarinpod and get the transcripts.

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Silent

 

Taking also other problems related to reading Chinese in account, a full length novel does not feel like a good choice. Some short stories I could maybe consider trying. I have not yet idea how big the gap is between Graded Reader 2 & non-abridged fictional literature.

 

Don't know what your problems are, but if you choose your novel well it should not be that hard. There is no need to start with the classics. The easier novels are around 2000 characters and 4000-5000 different words. So, in size less then HSK6, but obviously the vocabulary is likely not all within HSK6. IMHO the main issue is the length of a novel, as a beginner this may be/look a daunting task. If you read consistently, every day a little, you'll get through it and the habit will help you to read longer and faster over time. Also becoming more familiar with the writing style (vocabulary &grammar) of the writer will help. I wouldn't rule out a novel too quickly.

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Qiaonansen

Silent,

Can you recommend some novels at the 2000 character level? I'd be interested in a list of some.

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rezaf

2200 characters is probably closer to the books written for children around 8~9. Maybe a few of those books can prepare you for more serious novels.

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makochan

Silent and rezaf are right.  Start off with novels geared towards kids young adults.  I just happened to be playing with imron's Chinese Text Analyser and here are some sample findings:

 

The Little Prince

1,486  - Unique Characters

2,572 - Unique Words

 

Grandma in the Apple Tree

1,875 - Unique Characters

3,670 - Unique Words

 

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

2,038 - Unique Characters

4,227 - Unique Words

 

Charlotte's Web

2,112 - Unique Characters

4,445 - Unique Words

 

Chronicles of Narnia - Lion, Witch, Wardrobe

2,149 - Unique Characters

4,827 - Unique Words

 

Harry Potter Part 1

2,582 - Unique Characters

7,738 - Unique Words

 

Hunger Games Part 1

2,728 - Unique Characters

8,458 - Unique Words

 

Twilight Part 1

2,818 - Unique Characters

9,472 - Unique Words

 

If reading novels isn't your thing, I've enjoyed this series from BLCUP:

http://www.blcup.com/EnSeriesBook/index/227

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edelweis

@makochan

I would not read the books you listed for the purpose stated by the OP. Translations of foreign children's books have little to do with daily life in China, both in the vocabulary and the story.

Have you read them? How did you like the translitterations of the characters names? did you feel that learning the word for a flying broom was useful?

I'm not saying nobody should ever read them, but read them for enjoyment (if that's the kind of book you like), not for learning daily life vocabulary and modern Chinese culture.

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yueni

I would recommend 《亲爱的安德烈》 by 龙应台 just for how easy it is to read. It's a series of letters between mother and son, so it is also easy to just focus on reading one letter a day/week etc.

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Geiko

@edelweis I've read several of those books (Charlie and the chocolate factory, the whole series of Hunger Games and right now I'm halfway through the third volume of Divergent series) and so far so good. Of course, I like this kind of novels, and I come across some not so useful vocabulary (分歧者、克己派、血清……) but I just don't intend to learn these words, just recognise them while reading the books and then forget them. I neither like nor dislike transliterations of names, I just assume they're (somewhat ugly) names and most of the times I can't even guess what the original one is (it's difficult to comment those books with friends, it takes me a while to guess who they are talking about!).

However, @op, if you purpose is to read materials with a high rate of useful words, these novels may not be what you're looking for.

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simc

I would recommend Woju. I felt this was relativity easy and is set in a modern urban environment. A lot of the text is dialogue rather than narration which reduces the amount of chengyu.

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Silent

I'll have a look or I can find the list I created when I started to read. This will however be tomorrow.

 

From the top of my mind.I think most of the books of 余华 fall in this category, but admittedly, the ones I'm familiar with contain a bit of archaic vocabulary. My first book was his 许三观卖血记, a report of my experience can be found here

 

I think 圈子圈套 is a good reccomendation too, It is clearly a bit harder then 许三观卖血记, but has more modern and useful language in a business setting.

 

平凡的世界 highly recommended here, I didn't read it yet, is fairly simple but also very long.

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Basil

余华,sure, but 平凡世界... I think the story moves too slowly for a first read.

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makochan

 

 

I'm not saying nobody should ever read them, but read them for enjoyment (if that's the kind of book you like), not for learning daily life vocabulary and modern Chinese culture.

 

Sure, it is not for everyone.  But at the HSK 5/6 level, I've found it hard to find other material that can be used for extensive reading.  And graduating from graded readers and completing a few lengthier novels can really boost motivation to keep studying.

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Qiaonansen

Silent,

 

Where did you get the "text" version of those books in in order to do the Chinese Text Analyser analysis on them?

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Geiko

Following makochan's idea, I've analized the novels I plan to read *soon* with CTA and here are the results (@Qiaonansen, I found txt versions of all of these novels at http://www.xiaoshuotxt.com/ , I wouldn't read these versions, because their quality is just so-so, but for CTA it works great):

 

红玫瑰与白玫瑰 :
   1983 unique characters
   3842 unique words


小鲍庄 (王安忆):

   2032 unique characters
   4316 unique words

活着 :
   1924 unique characters
   4425 unique words

放学后 (Keigo Higashino):
    2253 unique characters
    6262 unique words

撒哈拉的故事 (三毛):
   2277 unique characters
   6203 unique words

Murakami's 1973年的弹子球 :
    2451 unique characters
    6302 unique words

楼下的房客 (九把刀):
   2673 unique characters
   7482 unique words

蜗居 :
   2648 unique characters
   7848 unique words

等一个人咖啡 (九把刀):

   2779 unique characters
   8338 unique words

酒国 (Mo Yan):
   3764 unique characters
   13924 unique words

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Silent

 

Where did you get the "text" version of those books in in order to do the Chinese Text Analyser analysis on them?

I don't know anymore for these books. Most chinese e-books I have I downloaded through torrents and by googling for them.

 

 

 

Can you recommend some novels at the 2000 character level? I'd be interested in a list of some.

 

A quick search turned up the reading list I compiled based on my analyses, but not (yet) the vocabulary data. I compiled it largely based on vocabulary relative to length but also some more subjective reasons. Didn't get far in the list though. Read only the first 2 books (heavily aided by a pop-up dictionary) completely before neglecting my chinese due to work related study so can't really tell too much about the books themselves.

 

许三观卖血记_余华 (105096;1909;4253)

《圈子圈套》1 (147440;2521;7822)

[人淡如菊].亦舒.文字版 (61589;1943;4519)

荷包里的单人床 (43717;1775;3507)

风从指间掠过-张小娴 (31246;1581;2960)

三月里的幸福饼 (40624;1762;3572)

三个A cup的女人 (69869;2105;4752)

雪地里的蜗牛奄列 (34358;1692;3192)

再见野鼬鼠 (36837;1738;3499)

[活着].余华.文字版 (76111;1909;4396)

《圈子圈套》2 (165234;2858;9828)

《圈子圈套》3 (149989;2866;9884)

他的国 (86878;2465;7259)

平凡的世界.路遥 (718092;3681;19197)

 

Edit: added vocabulary data (total length in characters; unique characters; unique vocabulary). All the books are downloaded from internet so figures may be inaccurate.

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