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Hi,

I've recently been trying to compile a list of books to read with a friend who is learning Spanish.

Don Quixote is one of those on the list. I wonder that the language may be too far advanced, or perhaps, too cryptic for his level of understanding. What do you guys think?

I'm also looking into recommendations, I can not seem to find anything worthwhile.

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I think that Don Quixote might be too much for a beginner.  Plus, the book is very long and it might seem like a daunting task  :laugh:.  I'm not sure how far along your friend is in their studies but you might consider some contemporary authors.  One book I really enjoyed is La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.  If your friend likes magical realism, you can't go wrong with books by Carlos Fuentes (Aura is a personal favorite), Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Laura Esquivel or Isabel Allende. 

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  • 2 months later...

Don Quixote really isn't appropriate if you're beginner. It has a lot of old words that are no longer in use, so you'll be spending a good deal with a dictionary. Since the words aren't really used these days, I'm not sure that's the vocabulary you should be interested in.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Agreed with everyone else. Telling a Spanish student to read Don Quixote is like telling an English Student to read Shakespeare. It it unnecessarily complicated. You'd probably want to find some 20th or 21st century books first.

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  • 1 month later...

You should try a lighter reading for your friend, this kind of reading could be far too much for someone just starting out. Try something more simple, like biographies and things like that.  Also having a few cook books is nice, that way he or she can learn a lot new cooking terms.  That's why I'll be doing with Dutch!  I'll get a cooking book, an easy one and just ask what certain words means and so on.  Your friend should try the same.

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  • 1 month later...

I also believe that for a beginner, Don Quixote is difficult, but it's certainly a novel you must read. We had a ''Spanish Day'' a few months back... I believe it was on St. George's Day and they said that it was the practice in Spain to read chapters of Don Quixote, if not the whole book. I found this interesting and I had certainly participated. I believe we read the second chapter... but I can't be sure now. It was read in various languages including Russian, Italian, Croatian, German, French, English... my point was, it's important to read the book, but not necessarily in Spanish. You can always try when you have more knowledge of the language.

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Don Quixote is way to complicated for beginners. Instead, try looking up passages from the book online. Try to find the chapter regarding Don Quixote trying to fight the windmills. That chapter is usually what Spanish learners read first from Don Quixote. Start with that, and build up from there. I can't remember the titles of other simpler stories, but I know that there are some stories online that are meant for beginners.

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