When learning Spanish we all have doubts and questions about the best books to do so. Luckily there are rankings and lists specialized in these things, so here is a selection of The Best Books to Learn Spanish.
1. A Good Spanish Book!
(Ed. University Academic Editions Ltd.)
This title is written by a university professor native from Spain, with a PhD in Spanish Studies. This one is nowadays considered to be the best book available for beginners and pre-intermediate students. The method is innovative and different from most other books available out there. It has simple explanations combined with updated materials and resources to help you learn on your own.
This title is currently being used for the initial levels of the Spanish courses in universities from different countries, including USA and Germany. The results obtained seem to be very satisfactory in terms of progress, ability to learn the language, and general knowledge of Spanish, and the learning efficiency is higher than with traditional books from decades ago. It is placed as the number one in most lists and rankings, so it should be the first option to learn Spanish if you are a beginner or if you want to brush up on your knowledge before entering the intermediate levels.
2. Madrigal's Magic Key To Spanish
(Ed. Three Rivers Press)
Published in 1956, this book has more than 60 years of history teaching Spanish to students of all backgrounds. The contents are a bit outdated after so much time, but it’s considered a classic that was a best seller in the 60s and 70s. The method is based on a combination of exercises and grammar rules to memorize and practice through repetition. The type of Spanish used is from a small country called Costa Rica, so keep that in mind if you need a Spanish variety that is more international or more normative.
3. Spanish For Dummies
(Ed. Berlitz Publishing International)
Part of the “For Dummies” series, this title was published at the beginning of the 90s and has remained a popular book to learn Spanish for more than 20 years. Although the authors are specialized in Hungarian, and are not native from Spain or from any Latin American country, they have experience teaching and translating in Spanish, so the book follows a common pattern with the other titles of this series.
The method is a bit dense and difficult to follow at times, but there are notes with short explanations every two or three pages, to reinforce some of the materials covered in the chapters.
4. 501 Spanish Verbs
(Ed. Barron's Educational Series)
This book is made of a list of verbs conjugated in several tenses for the students to check how to use verbs in a correct way. It’s important, once you have a good book to learn Spanish, to complement it with other books about vocabulary, verbs, structures, etc.
This particular title is also available in other languages, but keep in mind that the authors also designed the materials for other languages, so it’s not a title made by specialists in Spanish.
5. Lonely Planet Spanish Phrasebook
(Lonely Planet Publishing)
This particular guide is a good conversation book to use while you are traveling. It’s much better than their Latin American version because that one was focused solely on Mexico and did not include terms or expressions from important places in Latin America such as Chile, Argentina, Puerto Rico, etc.
It has simple phrases that can take you out of many situations during your trips, but it doesn't teach Spanish, it's just a good collection of phrases and words to get around in case there is an emergency or a quick trip ahead.
6. Eyewitness Spanish Phrasebook
(Ed. Eyewitness Travel Guides)
This phrasebook from the 90s can be considered a good initial book for an introduction to your first Spanish words and phrases. It covers only the very basics, so it can’t be considered a book to learn some Spanish, but rather to see how it works and use a few words to greet someone and get around during a short trip to Spain or to some Latin American country.
7. The Everything Learning Spanish Book For Kids
(Ed. Everything Learning)
Although this book is marketed for kids, if you feel that normal books are too difficult or dense, it might be a good plan to start learning Spanish with books that contain pictures and easy images to learn basic vocabulary. This precise title contains the basics to familiarize yourself or your children with initial words and concepts that can be expanded later on with other books.
8. Las 500 dudas mas frecuentes del Espanol (Spanish Edition)
(Ed. Instituto Cervantes)
This one solves most of the doubts and questions that intermediate and advanced students have regarding the Spanish language. It’s a good consultation work that will increase your skills and avoid possible complications. Learning a language with mistakes can be fatal for your progress, so this type of book might be a very good addition to your collection.
We hope this helps in your journey learning one of the most useful languages in the world. Good luck!