Title Animo 1 Spanish AS para AQA
Author IIsabel Alonso de Sudea, Vincent Everett, Maria Dolores Giménez Martínez, Maria Isabel Isern Vivancos
Publisher Oxford University Press
ISBN 9780199129089
Reviewer Ruth McCann


I think this is probably the third incarnation of the Ánimo series and, from the cover, it looks remarkably like the previous two. (You know the one I mean – red cover, green stripe, close-up of a bit of baile flamenco.) So, are the contents any different? Well, this book does pretty much what it says on the tin: it is ‘para AQA’ so the sections have been redefined and now fit the AQA specification far more neatly. ‘Los medios de comunicación’ now focuses just on technology and is joined by discrete chapters on ‘La televisión’ and ‘Anuncios y publicidad.’ The other topics are similarly catered for. There has been a certain amount of recycling in terms of the texts; however, there is just about enough new material to feel there is more to this new edition than just a change in page numbers. Each chapter now ends with a useful section on vocabulary and an even more useful AQA style grammar gap-fill exercise. And, when you’ve discussed the burning question in the final chapter ‘hasta que la muerte nos separe?’ you’ll find some excellent exam practice. First there is a clear explanation as to how the AQA examination works; although hopefully your students will be more than aware of that by this point! Next, come comprehension exercises followed by essay titles and speaking tasks: all organised by topic and all ‘para AQA’ as promised. It is good to see emphasis on how important it is to effectively plan an essay and guidance as to how to do so. Similarly helpfully, students are given a comprehensive and sensible list of oral questions for which they are advised to prepare their answers. All of this is further supplemented by a grammar workbook and a self-study guide. For the teacher there are additional resources in the shape of an OxBox package and an actual paper teacher’s book which does not need to be accessed on-line! Can you tell, for me this is a plus? Admittedly this may not be as interactive and cutting-edge as other packages out there; however, this is a user-friendly course book and, if you are preparing your students ‘para AQA’ this could well be a good choice ‘para ellos.’