Book Review: Lëtzebuergesch fir all Dag. Lektiounen 1-8

Lëtzebuergesch fir all Dag. Lektiounen 1-8, by  Guy Bentner & Frederic Noens

It is difficult to figure out who exactly this book is for.  The fact that I am reading it and enjoyed the book and what it had to say suggests in some ways that this book is for me as someone who has fun becoming familiar with languages even if my comprehension with the material is somewhat limited by the fact that the writing is only in Luxembourgish and not in any other language at all that I would know better.  The fact that I can recognize enough cognates to make this book at least somewhat comprehensible is remarkable and enjoyable to me even if it does not mean that this is a book which I can specifically recommend to many other people I know.  If you live in or work in Luxembourg and you want to understand the language better and get a sense of the grammar and vocabulary of Luxembourgish this is definitely a book that I can warmly recommend although I must concede that I do not know many people who happen to fit into that category in the first place.  If you know who you are and you fit in with that category, consider this a recommendation.

This book is a relatively short one at between 100 and 150 pages and it is divided into eight lessons which are divided between material about speech and grammar in Luxembourgish.  The first lesson includes basic questions, phonetics, numbers from one to twenty, as well as yes and no, articles, and basic questions (1).  After that there are lessons about the pronuncation of ou, larger numbers, and professions as well as some verbs (2).  Later lessons continue specific vocabulary and grammar like classroom and verbs like to go and to make (3), how to make words plural (4), accusative and reflexive aspects of the language (5), possessives and adjective forms (6), future tense and vocabulary relating to invitations and telephone service (7), and vocabulary about the family as well as the past tense (8).  The material gets more complex as the book goes on, which adds to the challenge level, and is filled with visuals that give the reader a sense of actual material in Luxembourgish that one might be expected to read and translate and understand if one happened to visit the country or work or live there.

One of the really notable and enjoyable aspects of this book is the way that the contents are clearly labeled out.  As someone who has read quite a few books where the author(s) did not pay very much attention at all about how the reader is to understand the structure and organization of the material.  In a work like this one where the intent of the work is to help someone to better learn an obscure language that few people know or speak, it is all the more notable that the authors have sought to frame that learning in a comprehensible way.  It is also evident, and unsurprising, that this particular book is part of a more complete set of materials on the learning of Luxembourgish [1] that include audio materials so that one can hear the language.  Admittedly, the set of materials I came across did not include the audio help but all the same this is certainly a lesson that would be practical for those who want to learn Luxembourgish and at least be able to recognize a few words if one should travel in the country, for example, and desire not to offend a people who is used to having people not take the effort even to speak a few basic things in their native tongue.

[1] See, for example:

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2020/07/17/book-review-letzebuergesch-fir-all-dag-lektiounen-1-8-exercicen/

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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