Here is a native speaker of Urdu, trying to learn Hindi script. I agree, since there are no article in Hindi and "Julia reads the book." is being accepted. Using the same logic, there is no THE in the original Hindi phrase, Jula reads A book." should also be accepted as correct. Otherwise without the article the "correct translation of the phrase wouid be: जूलिया (Julia) किताब (book) पढ़ती (read) है (is) . In other words the literal translation would be...... Julia is read book. ....where did THE come from. And if the assumption that THE is necessary to make the sentence be proper and correct, why A is being not accepted?
"Where English uses the definite article, Hindi generally uses the zero article (i.e., no article), and in fewer cases, the demonstratives yeh 'this', voh 'that', and ve 'those'. And, while Hindi does have an indefinite article, ek, its distribution and applicability differs from that of a/an. Ek is also the Hindi word for one, which is not an uncommon relationship to find in languages. [...] Kellog (1972) notes that, 'It should be observed, that most Europeans use ek for the indefinite article much too freely. In the majority of cases, it should not be translated into Hindi.'" (Baldridge, J., https://www.ling.upenn.edu/~jason2/papers/hindidef.htm).
Baldridge explains that we'd be better off thinking about how new the information that we want to convey really is: "The information-status of a given noun is the speaker's specification to his/her audience as to where the entity which that noun refers to originated-directly from the speaker's world model; from the current situation; from what is thought to be mutually known; from the discourse itself; or from what may be inferred about something in the discourse. Prince (1981) classifies information-status according to her taxonomy of Assumed Familiarity: Brand-new (anchored and unanchored), Unused, Inferrable (containing and non-containing), and Evoked (textually and situationally). This proves to be a much more useful way of thinking about discourse entities than in terms of definiteness and indefiniteness, which can often lead to confusion with grammatical definiteness (Prince 1992)."
Baldridge then shows a chart counting the number of times each article is used in Hindi, depending on newness of info and concludes: "ek specifies only Brand-new Unanchored entities, whereas the zero article can specify any type of Assumed Familiarity [...]
To ascertain the information-status of a determiner-less noun, one must utilize the context and certain grammatical features of the noun (is it mass or generic? singular or plural? specific or non-specific?)."
Finally, I see that for aprox. 100 instances where a determiner (an article or a demonstrative) was used, Baldridge found aprox. 200 instances where nothing preceded the noun!
Articles are not used in Hindi at all. The dilemma here is that the correct translation in English requires an article and therefore the translation includes an article which is not there in the original Hindi text. Literally, the translation of this phrase would be "Julia reads book" . But then it sounds strange in English but it is correct in Hindi.
Hindi has a special form for the progressive tense (which I don't think this course covers). "is reading" would be पढ़ रही है. You essentially chop off the ता/ती/ते part of the present form, add on रहा/रही/रहे as a separate word, and then the appropriate form of the verb "to be". मैं खा रहा हूँ । तुम जा रहे हो । वे पी रही हैं
पढ़ता is the masculine singular form.
पढ़ती is the feminine (singular and plural) form.
पढ़ते is the masculine plural form (which is also used for mixed-gender groups) Eg:
राज किताबें पढ़ता है। - Raj reads books.
जूलिया अख़बार पढ़ती है। - Julia reads newspapers.
नेहा और जूलिया कविताएँ पढ़ती हैं। - Neha and Julia read poems.
राज और आमिर कहानियाँ पढ़ते हैं। - Raj and Aamir read stories.