Are you going to learn Latvian in three months?
No, you are not.
Is it a bad book?
No, it’s fine.
One reviewer on Amazon had this to say:
The book is easy to follow and includes the basics without being childish.
The best word that describes this book is concise.
It does not mean that it covers only the most important things for you to learn.
No. It means that the format of the book is very concise: as many grammar and vocabulary tables as possible, as little explanation as possible.
Let’s see how a Latvian learner who bought this book felt about it:
you are left feeling swamped by the amount of information you are expected to take in at one sitting
rushes through the grammar far too fast
Table of Contents
The Latvian Alphabet
Module I: Greeting and Adressing People
1. Polite Expressions
3. Category of Case
4. Declension of Nouns
5. The Vocative Case
6. Personal Pronouns I
7. Conjugation of the Verbs: būt and nebūt
Module II: Daily Routines
8. How to Thank People
9. The Genitive Case
10. Indefinite Adjectives
11. Personal Pronouns II
13. Declension of Numerals
14. Conjugation of the Verb dot
Module III: Travelling and Transport
15. Consonant Changes
16. Definite Adjectives
17. Ordinal Numerals
18. Demonstrative Pronouns
19. What’s the Time?
20. Conjugation of the Verb iet
Module IV: In the Shop and in the Bank
21. The Accusative and Instrumental Cases
22. Posessive Pronouns
24. Phone Conversations
Module V: At Home and in the Restaurant
25. The Dative Case
26. The 3rd Declension Nouns
27. Comparison of Adjectives
28. The Verb
30. The 1st Conjugation Verbs
31. The 6th Declension Nouns
32. The Locative Case
33. The 2nd Conjugation Verbs
34. The Reflexive Pronoun sevis
Module VII: Leisure Activities
36. The 3rd Conjugation Verbs
37. The Imperative Mood
39. Negative Sentences
Module VIII: Let’s Take a Break!
41. Reflexive Verbs
42. The Debitive Mood
Module IX: Studies and Work
44: Reflexive Nouns
45. The Subjunctive Mood
Module X: Good-bye Riga!
47. Diminutives of Nouns
50. Commonly Used Abbreviations
You can buy it online for about €20 and up: Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk
You can buy it in Riga at the Globuss bookstore near at the H&M store at the Galerija Centrs shopping mall in the Old Town for €7.69
I would not recommend this book if you are trying to learn Latvian. The problem with this book is that it is too concise. You’ll feel swamped by the amount of material that you have to memorize.
I would recommend this book only if you don’t have access to any other language learning materials about Latvian.
But it’s not completely useless. There are many excercises with answers that you can use to practice Latvian grammar.
On the other hand, if you already speak some Latvian or would like to brush up on it, this book is useful for reviewing grammar concepts.