A fun and easy new way to quickly acquire or enhance basic reading skills
These unique guides are based on the premise that the best way to learn a
language is to start reading it, immediately. Suitable for raw beginners to
intermediate-level language learners, the new editions of these popular
titles feature engaging readings of progressive difficulty that allow
learners to rapidly build comprehension.
Easy French Reader begins with the adventures of two friends, an
American and a Parisian, as they learn about their respective cultures. This
is followed by readings on the history of France, from ancient Gaul to the
present. The final section features four abridged short stories by famous
Similarly, Easy Spanish Reader begins with the story of two high
school seniors involved with their Spanish Club, followed by a history of
Mexico, from the Conquistadors to the present, and an abridged version of
the classic story of "Lazarillo de Tormes."
- Progressive format makes it easy to quickly build comprehension
- Marginal word glossaries conveniently present new words and phrases
- Exercises challenge comprehension and build reading skills
- Attractive new editions, fully updated and featuring appealing new
artwork and expanded exercises
From the Back Cover
Learn how to read in Spanish--starting right now!
The Easy Reader Series books are unique, easy-to-follow guides based on
the premise that the best way to learn a language is to start reading it
immediately! Whether you're a brand-new beginner or an advanced-beginning
learner, the new editions of these popular titles give you ways to dive into
the language with engaging readings that progress in difficulty to match
your growing reading skills. This process will allow you to rapidly build
comprehension and confidence as you enjoy the stories.
Easy Spanish Reader begins with the story of two high-school
seniors involved with their Spanish Club. As you read about their
experiences, you'll discover the nuances of language and culture right along
with the students.
The next section contains a colorful history of Mexico, from the
Conquistadors to the present, including vivid depictions of Cortès's
encounters with the Aztecs. The last section is comprised of an abridged
version of the classic story "Lazarillo de Tormes," which allows you to
practice your grammar and vocabulary skills on a great work of Spanish
- Progressive format makes it easy to quickly build comprehension
- Marginal word glossaries conveniently present new words and phrases
- Exercises challenge language comprehension and build reading skills
- Fully updated new editions, featuring expanded exercises and answer
- Reading level: Ages 4-8
- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 2 edition (October 1, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0071428062
- ISBN-13: 978-0071428064
- Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review:
The beginning passages of this book are simple and relatively easy to understand
even if you barely know Spanish at all, but by the end of the book the readings
are more complex and challenging. This is a great way to get into Spanish if you
know very little. My only complaint is that the exercises are fairly pointless
because the answers are whole sentences straight from the text. However, the
great passages and formatting make this book worth buying as an introductory
I studied Spanish for six years, with the last being the 1996-1997 academic
year. I have tuned in to Spanish media and read a few Spanish language
magazines. I wanted to return to the nuts and bolts of the language, with an
affordable textbook. I picked up Easy Spanish Reader because it was affordable
Like any good student, I began with the first story about the two high school
students. I regained my confidence with the language. The second part, a short
history of Mexico, was fascinating and encouraging. I learned new vocabulary
words. I was able to understand each passage, referring to my dictionary only a
few times. The last section, the story of Lazarillo, was difficult. Not very
difficult, definitely didn't frustrate me, but it did make me work on my
comprehension. The Q&A, after each passage, focused on pulling information from
Dictionary does not have all the words. Have to use your own dictionary as well
as there. Gets cumbersome.
This book is often missing the correct usage of the third person indirect object
pronouns "le" and "les". There are several instances in which its says "dar a
alguien" where it should be "darle a alguien". This is very bad because I
started using it with my students when they began to learn these pronouns. They
noticed right away that they were missing.
p. 90: "entonces dijo a sus soldados" should be "entonces LES dijo a sus
p. 90: "y pronto estos ofrecieron su ayuda a Cortes" should be "y pronto estos
LE ofrecieron su ayuda a Cortes".
p. 78: "La directora inicia la ceremonia y habla a los presentes" should be "la
directora inicia la ceremonia y LES habla a los presentes".
p. 78: "Despues la directora entrega los diplomas a cada uno de los alumnos"
should be " Despues la directora LEs entrega los diplomas a cada uno de los
They're all over the place.
My students hated this book. I read it years ago but it was far too boring for
my eighth grade class. If you're looking for a reader, I'd recommend the Blaine
Ray series. It's easy vocabulary; the first book uses only 300 words and has 9
chapters. I had my students read a chapter for homework and then we acted it out
Great book for beginners. Although it is very basic, reading is very helpful
when learning a new language.
This is perfect for begineer's Spanish. The stories are a great introduction for
middle or high school students (even college learners). The stories are a little
more juvenial than the older grades, though each word in each story is found in
an index in the back of the book. A good buy.
I'm just starting to learn Spanish, and this book is very fun for practice.
I love this book. It is great for extra practice in Spanish. The exercises are
good for reinforcing what you have just read, and to make you think about the
structure and grammar. It also has the answers in the back of the book so you
can check your own work.
This review covers only parts I and II of the book, not the adaptation of
Lazarillo de Tormes at the end, because, frankly, I didn't get that far before I
gave up. (I might pick it up again, and if I still find it insufferable, I might
skip ahead to that section and check it out.) It should be possible to find a
similar adaptation online for free, anyway. Or, if you're in the mood for a
challenge, of course you can see if you can read it in the original archaic
Spanish... heck, I found one free online version in supposedly modernized
Spanish with a side-by-side English translation. (I say "supposedly" because I
haven't looked at it in detail yet.)
I bought this in the hopes that I'd have something easy to read. Well, it
certainly is. It starts out a little TOO easy, reminding me of my lessons from
Spanish I in high school. The language in the first part is very simple. Simple
language doesn't necessarily mean boring language: just ask Dr. Seuss. The
language gets more complex as you progress through the book. But no matter how
simple or how complex it is, it's flat-out BORING. There are no jokes. There is
no dramatic tension. There are almost no entertaining anecdotes; there was ONE
that gave me a chuckle (while I simultaneously rolled my eyes): a character who
starts talking about stamps and is apparently incapable of shutting up. But, in
short, there is no incentive to keep reading. True, the focus is to study
Spanish and not enjoy a good story, but who says you can't do both at the same
time? I couldn't stand to read this stuff if it were written in English; reading
it in a somewhat unfamiliar language only makes it worse.
The first part is about two students named Enrique and María, and their friends
and family and school. This is a fine setting, because words for the situations
that are likely to come up are a high priority for many students. But NOTHING
HAPPENS. There's no story. It's a coherent and consistent narrative, not a
random collection of sentences, but no matter how I try I just can't give a darn
about any of the characters or anything they do. A good writer could put
together a good story no matter how simple the language needs to be and no
matter what vocabulary items he wants to put into it. Or, at least, one that
doesn't make the reader want to fall asleep.
The second part is about the history of Mexico. The first half or so of that
part focuses on Hernán Cortés and the Aztecs. It reads like an oversimplified
history book. History isn't necessarily boring, but history books are usually
not fun to read because they're so dry. Here's what I think is the, uh,
highlight of the whole book:
"El pueblo azteca estaba tan enfurecido por la cobardía de su emperador que le
tiró piedras. Una de estas piedras le dio al emperador en la frente y causó una
herida grave. Algunos días después, Cortés mató al pobre emperador."
For those of you whose Spanish hasn't reached this level yet (and if it has,
don't even bother with this book), it says this:
"The Aztec people were so enraged by the cowardice of their emperor that they
threw stones at him. One of these stones hit the emperor in the forehead and
caused a severe wound. Several days afterward, Cortés killed the poor emperor."
Please! This could have been FUN to read. I could have been held in suspense,
wondering what the Aztec people were going to do, and after they hit the
emperor, wondering if the emperor is going to make it... no, there's no tension
or suspense at all. There's a book on programming (Writing Solid Code by Steve
Maguire) that talks about how code needs to be as clear and simple as possible,
rather unlike a mystery novel. But about that mystery novel, it says, "If you
wrote, 'Somebody walked up and stabbed Joe,' you'd put your reader to sleep." A
book on PROGRAMMING -- something that has very little to do with writing --
demonstrates a better grasp of storytelling principles than this book does.
Doesn't the part I quoted above come down to little more than "Somebody walked
up and stabbed Joe"?
The reason that this book doesn't get one star is that it does get a couple of
things right. The text is easy to understand, and for words I don't know, there
is usually either a quick definition in the margin or, failing that, one in the
back of the book. If you have an urgent need to read something, anything, in
Spanish that you can understand, it'll do the job. If you're intimidated by
Spanish and want to build confidence, this book can probably help if you
absolutely can't find anything better. But this book is strictly for studying,
nothing else. If you're looking for any entertainment at all, look elsewhere!
This book is fantastic. It's the best one I have seen like it. I made the
mistake of getting the 1st edition though and I feel like I got ripped off.
After I got the first edition I found out that there was a second edition for
less than half the price. I'm still very happy with the book and feel like my
understanding of Spanish is improving rapidly because of it.
Easy to read and use, yet a useful teaching tool. I strongly recommend it for
students who are in their second Spanish course.
Since I'm not a native speaker I had my class concentrate more on learning to
read and translate Spanish. They pretty much liked this book. They were more
interested in the stories about the two high school students Maria and Enrique
than the history of the Spanish conquest or the story of Lazarillo de Tormes.
The sections are short and accompanied by sets of questions to be answered as
well as true false questions and even crossword puzzles. This book is very easy
to read. The author uses mostly present tense and lots of cognates. My students
were mostly 2nd year repeats and they were able to get through it.
If you've had a semester or two of Spanish, and you truly want to learn the
langauge, I highly recommend this book. The book begins with very simple words
and phrases and progresses at a moderate pace to more difficult readings.
I tried other "beginner" books (such as "First Spanish Reader"), but I found
them too advanced after only a few months in the classroom. Now, "Easy Spanish
Reader" has helped me bridge the gap from my textbook to hispanic newspapers and
short stories (and to "First Spanish Reader" again).
My edition (the second) has an answer key for the exercises (although you won't
need it) and a pretty good glossary.
Hint: Re-read the passages every now and then, and make flash cards out of the
few words you don't remember. You'll be surprised how quickly you can learn that
I am very pleased with the Easy Spanish Reader. The book is in excellent
condition and was delivered promptly. Thank you.
This second edition of Tardy's book is excellent for the beginning student,
whether she be in a class or learning Spanish on her own. She will, however,
need a dictionary and a grammar book on her desk as well, for Tardy doesn't
define all new words and structures as they are introduced.
This is a terrific book for older children through young adults who are starting
to learn Spanish. It moves seamlessly from raw beginner to reasonable reading
levels, without talking down to the reader. Plus, being successful early on
really motivates the student. The Spanish tutor that we work with uses it as the
centrepiece of the lessons, spinning out vocabulary and grammer exercises from
the text, and the interest level stays high for the children. We bought it on
the strength of the other reviews on Amazon, and it has really lived up to the
This is the best book I've read for someone learning Spanish. It uses
terminology within the 1st semester and has a very good grasp of which words
need further definition. I highly recommend this book for anyone learning
Spanish. It does not speak down to the student, but instead, gives the student
credit for a good deal of intelligence and shows confidence in the reader. I
give this book top marks and rate it at the top of it's class.
A great book for beginning Spanish learners. Limited vocabulary helps the
learner to build syntax skills. Highly recommended for anyone interested in
learning Spanish or brushing up on rusty skills.
I highly recommend this one. I used it as the sole text for a Summer Spanish
Reading course. We introduced the vocab, and then read the chapters and
discussed answers as well as words the students learned from context clues.
There are three sections, which allow you to take a breather, or continue to
increase your vocabulary, grammar, and simply any part of Spanish - for your
best results, be sure to read it aloud!
This is definitely geared to an avid reader - the junior high crowd at the
youngest. For the younger student, try the workbook Flip Flop Spanish, or some
board books by Wemberley or Boynton, as well as the classics like good night
moon and Curious George translated.
Author of Flip Flop Spanish: Ages 3-5: Level 1 & Flip Flop Spanish: Ages 3-5:
I love this book! Not only am I refreshing my memory of beginner level spanish
vocabulario (Me llamo un ano tres estudiante espanol), but i am finally learning
how to read more fluently in Spanish, and understanding it more coherently than
i ever did before! It surprises me that they don't use this book in class for
all grade levels of spanish students. Sure, for a second or third year student,
it's a piece of torta(cake)! But, it's truly a great way to refresh the memory
of simple vocabulary, and it's entertaining, unlike the very boring spanish
stories that we had to read in class. I would recommend this book to beginners,
second year, and third year students!
Enrique and Maria are seniors at Glenview High School, learning Spanish and
enjoying the activities of their Spanish club, los Aventureros. They have an
enjoyable senior year, playing sports, going to movies, and even exchanging
"e-mails" with students from Spain. As we say goodbye to Enrique and Maria their
friendship is ripening into--well, maybe, something more. So, what will finally
happen? You will just have to read the book to find out--in Spanish.
Two subsequent sections of the book comprise a brief history of Mexico--in full
blood and gore--from the Aztecs to Vicente Fox; and a shortened adaptation of a
classic 16th century Spanish work, Lazarillo do Tormes.
Easy Spanish Reader is based on the concept that you learn quickest by simply
reading. The lessons are progressive so that you learn quickly, incorporating
new words based on context. There are no tedious grammar lessons or vocabulary
lists. No verb conjugations. Everything explains itself, except for a small
number of marginal glosses for new vocabulary words. As other reviewers have
noted, a certain rudimentary knowledge of Spanish is essential to use this book,
but it can be minimal. The concept works, partly because English and Spanish
share so many words and concepts. Exercizes after each lesson help to
consolidate what has been learned.
The only flaw I could find is that the glossary at the back is incomplete. There
are a few words you will just have to guess at. I enjoyed this book thoroughly,
and I feel it has greatly enhanced my knowledge of Spanish. I recommend it
highly. Reviewed by Louis N. Gruber.
I honestly love this book. One of the things I prize about it is that it is
genuinely funny. Oh the chapter about Enrique's mala suerte...espero espero pero
no el director ---is precious. The first time through I was just reading to hear
the words and follow the story, but my second pass through I am paying attention
to verb tenses and conjugations. Verbs (and other words) keep re-appearing in
different ways throughout the text, in different contexts, and one comes away
with sense of discovery and mastery
I used audio learning (Pimsleur; Learn Spanish in your Car; Vocabulearn). This
book was excellent to help me bridge my audio comprehension to visual/reading. I
don't know why the 2nd edition is labelled "Abridged". The only difference I
noticed is that the 2nd edition has an increased page count, and it has the
answers to the exercises at the end of the book. I didn't notice any material
This is a great book for older teens as it starts with stories of college level
students attending the University of Mexico. Later it evolves into some of the
history of So. America. I just ordered a copy for my HS granddaughter in Oregon
who is struggling with Spanish lessons.
I'm keeping my own copy of Easy Spanish Reader since I find it a very quick and
enjoyable way to improve my understanding of Spanish. Also, will use the book as
a reference while having conversations with my grandaughter. Should be fun and
motivating for both of us.