Any Russian books for beginners?
I want to read a Russian book with basic grammar, any ideas?
Children's books from Amazon in both English and Russian might be interesting.
I use the New Penguin Russian Course (NPRC). I've gone through the whole thing, bit am still working on vocabulary from the last three chapters (of 30). I think it is very well organized and introduces you to all the necessary grammar. It includes some grammatical items that are used primarily in writing (like gerunds and participles), but these items are clearly marked as optional. The one downside is that the book sometimes uses some obscure vocabulary. A book that sticks to the most commonly used vocabulary would be nice. Then again, the approach in NPRC does allow them to include material from real writing.
I have the second edition, from 1996. It is a paperback, so it's cheap. $6 to $16 U.S., There is no audio with it, but I've never had a problem with that. I use a flash card program called Flashcards on my iPad. You make the cue cards yourself and can download Audiofiles for whatever you have on your cards. It uses a machine voice that is a lot better than the one on DuoLingo, in my opinion. Also, I recently started using the Mondly app. It is really good for pronunciation and listening comprehension, since the material is recorded from real speakers. It seems like a good companion to Duolingo. I also use Wiktionary online for definitions, declinations, conjugations, etc. You can search for most any word from most any language there.
If anyone is using NPRC, or wants to, let me know. I have somewhere around 5000 electronic cue cards, sorted by chapter and by grammar. I'd be happy to share them.
My Russian is very rudimentary, but I've been using a Berlitz "Essential Russian" course book simultaneously with Duolingo. Additionally, I just bought a new book called Russian Short Stories for Beginners, written and published by polyglots Olly richards and Alex Rawlings. This is specifically for beginners whose Russian is not yet ready for typical short stories.
I just bought this book from Amazon, and having studied about a third of the Duolingo course, and completed a little self-study besides, I was able to read the first story almost immediately and with almost no help from the vocab at the end of the story. The second story was quite a leap though, and I'm only at the stage of getting the gist here and there. I'm very much looking forward to having the knowledge to complete the whole book though, and I would certainly say it is valuable, providing you understand at least 4 out of the 6 cases (i.e. Nom, Gen, Acc and Prep (and probably a tiny bit of Dat and Ins too)), can conjugate verbs in the present tense, and can use adjectives at a basic level. Hope this proves useful for you.
Merry Christmas :-)
Oh, and I should add that calling the texts "stories" is a bit of a stretch. They are more like the page-long comprehension exercises I did in primary school when learning English (and there are questions at the end). I always thought comprehension tests were for dummies in school (haha!) but now I totally understand their value!!