Title Amici
Author Carole Shepherd and Derek Aust
Publisher Oxford University Press
ISBN 0199124248
Reviewer Alessandra Symons
   

The book has a good coverage of the standard GCSE and IB Ab Initio syllabus. It has a fast moving style which exposes the student to advanced aspects of the language fairly early on; however this is done in context and in a very useful manner. For example already on page 12 some typical classroom environment questions and instructions are offered for recognition and memorisation.

Since the book is designed for use in an English speaking environment there are plenty of links between the two languages that can be used as effective memorisation aids.

The target audience is young adult beginners and the style and tone of the book well represents that. There are examples of youth speak and neologisms and anglicisms mainly used by young people in Italy, for example chattare. In order to successfully use this book the student beginners must have a language learning background and ideally know other foreign languages since a lot of inferences and deductions occur.

Interesting activities are presented and visual clues are used throughout the book; however I have found the layout personally very distracting and difficult to read. There is too much on a page and the style is too concise for me, but I might be too old!! The grammar pages at the end of the book are similarly too tightly packed.

The studentís workbook is a good companion to the book with plenty of interesting and varied tasks. In my opinion it could contain more repetition and reiteration and I did not like the blue ink choice, in my view quite a tiring colour to read, in the long run.

I will seriously consider buying this book as an additional resource and possibly adopting it as my course book in the future.