Jump to content
Chinese-forums.com
Learn Chinese in China
  • Why you should look around

    Since 2003, Chinese-forums.com has been helping people learn Chinese faster and get to China sooner. Our members can recommend beginner textbooks, help you out with obscure classical vocabulary, and tell you where to get the best street food in Xi'an. And we're friendly about it too. 

    Have a look at what's going on, or search for something specific. We hope you'll join us. 
Phil Wareham

Chinese reading material on the Kindle?

Recommended Posts

Phil Wareham

I've just bought a Kindle and want books to read at my level (1500 characters or Chinese grade 2~3). All my searches find things at beginner level, native speaker level or the wrong format. I live in Nantong, Jiangsu, so can buy from Chinese online stores and will just buy paper copies if need be. All I really need is the name of a series of books. Any tips? I'm asking around, so will post here if I find something useful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

laurenth

For paper books, this thread contains lots of suggestions.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
character

At your reading level I think paper is the easiest option. Otherwise, Calibre or other software should be able to convert various files into kindle-friendly format.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
trevorld

If you feel graded beginner material is too easy then it might be time to jump into the intermediate-friendly native stuff.  A lot of people are fans of using Chinese manhua as a bridge between graded materials and native (prose) novels. 

 

https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/27354-grand-comic-reading-project/

 

https://www.chinese-forums.com/forums/topic/53547-book-list/

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Phil Wareham

Thanks everyone. I asked you guys and the Chinese teachers at my school to get answers from different angles. I've bookmarked the pages you guys linked and like the sound of comics.

 

It seems like directly buying Kindle books in Chinese is not gonna be smooth, but I read slowly enough that creating txt files for the Kindle is a smart idea; creating them faster than I read won't be hard. Last night I made a file with 睡前故事 and it was very good. A couple of new words amongst otherwise relaxing reading, but the content will get old very soon. Sorting out a zh-en dictionary will make this nicer.

 

I ordered the book one teacher recommended (paperback from Taobao) called 昆虫记。

 

Another teacher recommended a paper bilingual series by 湖北少年儿童出版社 that could be a little above me.

 

If you want a laugh, try doing the voices in a bedtime story about a tadpole with a native speaker listening. It's hilarious.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

Remember you can use the preview function in the Amazon website, as well as download free samples to your Kindle, to try before you buy.

Also, the Kindle app in your PC or tablet (or the Amazon Cloud Reader, if available in China) can make it a lot easier to sort out the vocabulary, save word lists, use pop-up dictionaries, copy passages to Chinese Text Analyser, or (in a tablet) use Pleco while you read. These allow you to access reading material that is above your current level, especially material you are interested in reading.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
trevorld

 

5 hours ago, Luxi said:

(or the Amazon Cloud Reader, if available in China) can make it a lot easier to sort out the vocabulary, save word lists, use pop-up dictionaries, copy passages to Chinese Text Analyser

 

The Amazon Cloud Reader (in Firefox running on Linux) has copy-and-paste disabled and they coded it to prevent at least the Perapera pop-up dictionary from working while reading texts and I'm pretty sure you'd need to go to the bother of emulating another operating system just to get the proprietary Kindle program running.  It was especially frustrating since when I bought a Chinese book I thought because in the Kindle store it had a simplified character cover it would also have simplified character contents but turned out the content was in traditional characters which I hadn't practiced yet to read and Amazon had coded things up so I initially couldn't look things up easily in a dictionary.  Was eventually able to get Pleco OCR lookup working on top of the Kindle Android app on my phone but decided then that I'd never buy a book from Kindle store again.  DRM-free ebooks are way more user-friendly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi
1 hour ago, trevorld said:

The Amazon Cloud Reader (in Firefox running on Linux) has copy-and-paste disabled

 

Oh, no! It used to be possible to copy entire books, then just the page one was on, then a shorter section...Lucky for me, I only bought a few Chinese books from Amazon, they won't sell from the Chinese store to UK, and the Chinese language choice in Amazon UK is pathetic & expensive. Thanks to that I was forced to discover several nice Chinese eBook stores, just as cheap as Amazon.cn. Paying for ebooks from abroad can be a problem (I do it through the Apple apps store), but the choice of books and prices is as good as Amazon's.

Of the ones I tried, the Duokan on-line reader/reading app is the best, Dang Dang's is also very good though not as sophisticated. Both allow 'copy' and traditional/simplified font change, and both give a generous about 60 page free 'preview'. Duokan's browser reader in Chrome additionally allows using Perapera and Zhongwen (as well as the MDBG Chinese Reader.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TonganRambo

I use the kindle

I found the Hunger Games books (whole series, I have the simplified ones) along with the Mandarin Companion Readers (sounds like you are more advanced than the graded readers though). I like the kindle app because you just have to highlight a text, it will give you the pinyin and definition, and then you can highlight it. After I finish a reading session/chapter/etc, I usually go back and you can go directly into your notebook and find each highlight as well as the sentence it was used in. I tried to do it one time but decided not to risk my kindle account (I have over 2,000 books on it) but you can access the Chinese kindle account which has a lot more western books translated into Chinese. For me, I started reading western books translated into Chinese as my very first novels in Chinese because I at least knew the story so if I didn't understand an entire paragraph or two, it wouldn't mess up the story for me. I read through all 7 of the Harry Potter novels and by the end of those I hardly had any trouble reading other novels/newspapers/etc. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TonganRambo
On 6/12/2017 at 5:14 AM, Phil Wareham said:

 

I've just bought a Kindle and want books to read at my level (1500 characters or Chinese grade 2~3).

 

That's a little higher than I was at when I started reading HP/Hunger Games in Chinese. I could read the Mandarin Companion Graded Readers level two. The first 50 pages were rough but after that it went much smoother. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luxi

A very good use for the Kindle (and other readers) is to upload other reading material, and take advantage of the embedded dictionary and other language tools. The Kindle can handle not only kindle's mobi an dAmazon files and pdfs, but also text and Word doc files. This allows uploading short articles, note pages for study, single stories, essays, and entire books.

There are several ways to upload files, simplest way is to connect the kindle to a PC and copy the file into the kindle folder. If you want the file formatted for the Kindle, you can use the free Open Source program Calibre, or Amazon's own service. It's a bit touch and miss with pdfs, but it works very well with text files without any need of formatting.

There are lots of literature (Chinese and translated western books) around the internet as text files, which the kindle can handle as e-books, making reading a lot easier. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×