Talk To Me in Korean
Authors: Talk to me in Korean
Levels: 1, 2, 3 have been released in paperback so far.
Media included: a CD
Where to buy: My Korean Store which is run by the TTMIK team

My comments: Ideal for beginners. The lessons are easy to grasp, includes many sample sentences, often additional information about when to use the grammar in real life is given, and there are exercises as well as an answer key so you can check your answers. With TTMIK you will feel that you are progressing quickly.

Sogang Korean (서강 한국어)
Authors: Korean Language Education Center, Sogang University.
Where to buy: TwoChois (online store only) SOAS bookshop – both online and physical store.

My comments: This is a series of books which I have found useful for learning a lot of new vocab and grammar points. The books are ideally used for classes, but also work fairly well for self study. Of course you’re missing out on the group activities unless you’re studying with a friend. I use these books alongside TTMIK.

Korean – A comprehensive grammar.
Authors: Jaehoon Yeon and Lucien Brown.
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 978-0-415-60385-0
Where to buy: Amazon UK (physical book), Amazon US (kindle edition)

My comments: This is not a page-turner in itself, but I have found it really helpful for looking up things.

Complete guide to the TOPIK: Basic/ Intermediate/ Advanced (pre-2013 exam format).
Authors: Kim Jin-ae and Gu Young-eun
Publisher: Darakwon
Levels: Basic, Intermediate, Advanced
ISBN (basic level): 978-89-5995-810-8. Includes two CD’s with listening exercises.
ISBN (intermediate level): 978-89-5995-813-9. Includes two CD’s with listening exercises.

My comments: I only have the first two so unfortunately I cannot give the ISBN for the advanced book. I like the concept of these books because they contain old TOPIK questions and explain the different types of questions that you can come across as well as how to solve them. Besides the practice questions, each book contains two full tests that you can do at home. Both practice questions and practice tests have answer sheets.
Buying the books: I could not get these books in my home country and I wasn’t up for navigating the publisher’s website – all in Korean – so one of my friends based in Seoul was so kind to send them to me.
The old TOPIK questions that have been selected for this set of books are on the more difficult end of the scale so it is likely that you will find these more challenging than the average old TOPIK paper you will go through.

Useful Chinese Characters for Learners of Korean
Authors: Choi Eun Kyu, Kim Min Ae, Kim Sang Hee, Min Jung Won, Oh Mi Nam
Publisher: Darakwon
Levels: first section for beginners and second section of book for intermediate
ISBN: 978-89-5995-764-4
Where to buy: TwoChois

My comments: this book provides a good introduction to how to read and write Chinese characters. Actually remembering them all is a different matter of course…

Modern Korean – An Intermediate Reader
Author: Kim Nam-Kil
Publisher: University of Hawai’i Press
ISBN: 9780824822224
Where to buy: Foyles

My comments: The second part of the book introduces hanja studies as well.

Book reviews
For thorough reviews of Korean books, check out the category called Book reviews in the menu found on the right side of the screen, it will be updated regularly.

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