The Mezzofanti Guild Language Learning Made Simple

How To Find Quality Foreign Language Books For Cheap

UPDATE: I can’t recommend enough this foreign language reference list (click here) for used language books.

Just make sure to look at the “used” price as you look through the list (you can also select ‘Bargain’ books in the left sidebar).


Do you have a foreign language book collection?

Are you the kind of person who loves to go out and buy books to add to your library (even though you may not need them :))?

I am!

In fact, my language book collection is the most precious thing I own.

I’ve been collecting books on other languages for over 10 years and literally have a mountain of boxes full of these books in storage back home while I’m travelling the world.


Second-hand bookshops can be goldmines for foreign language material

Nothing beats opening a brand new book and getting a whiff of that new book smell.

I recently had to dispose of hundreds of dollars of Korean language books while I was in transit (I was over my weight limit and the airline people weren’t nice about it) so now I use a Kindle but I still think nothing compares to touching real paper 🙂

Before you go buying expensive new books however, make sure to check out second-hand bookshops and see if you can get lucky.

You never know what you might be lucky enough to find.

I stopped in at a second-hand bookshop the other day and picked up these latest additions to my bookshelf for only about $2.00 each. I pretty much cleared out the foreign language section! 🙂

This is what I found:

Berlitz Turkish phrase book

Lonely Planet Cantonese phrase book

Practical Thai

Indonesian For Daily Use

Teach Yourself Norwegian

Say It In Fijian

Malay Made Simple

Bahasa Malaysian For Everyone

A Guide To Remembering Japanese Characters

Japanese For Beginners

Berlitz Norwegian – English dictionary

Indonesian – English dictionary

Japanese – English dictionary

Latvian – English dictionary

Malay – English dictionary

Icelandic – English dictionary

If you look hard enough in the right places you can dig up some really handy resources for next to nothing.

Looking for useful Language resources? Check out my list of Essential Language Learning Tools.




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  1. I have the Langenscheidt ordbok myself. Also, my copy of Teach Yourself looks a lot newer than that.

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