I was contacted some months ago by the publisher of this, Amp Comics (check out their site there, they have other similar stuff if you like this), who had seen my post about learning Spanish from comics and knew I was a Garfield fan (have been since I was about 7 or 8, easily my favorite comic), and wanted to send me a couple copies for review. I said “sure, go ahead” and have been meaning to write something up for a few months now because it’s something I know a lot of people would like, it’s very much “what you see is what you get” (it’s just…Garfield comics in Spanish, that’s it), and it’s quite affordable (about $7 on Amazon for either the paperback or e-book).
Now, as I mentioned in that post of mine above that I linked to, you can read tons of (Spanish and English) Garfield comics online for free at GoComics.com, but I really like having a physical paperback version of most books and this is definitely one of them. First of all, comics don’t work well in an e-book format for numerous reasons: differing screen sizes and resolutions means they’ll display properly on some people’s devices and not others, the comics in this book are all in color and many e-readers are black-and-white only, and it’s just nice to have a physical copy to hold in your hands many times. Some books are actually better as e-books, however this is not one of them (to be fair, I haven’t viewed the e-book version so I don’t know how good/bad it is but I know it won’t look as nice on my black-and-white Kindle as it does in color hard copy in front of me).
So far I’m perfectly happy with my copy in terms of the physical quality of it: color, pictures, alignment, paper weight, durability, etc. are all very good. I’ve been reading it for several months and it’s held up just fine (no pages falling out, no spine failure, etc.).
Important (and quick) side note!
If you’re reading this you’re probably learning Spanish at a beginner or intermediate level, and if so could I recommend you quickly check out a site called Yabla? They teach you Spanish using videos made by and for natives (e.g. TV shows, movies, YouTube videos, cartoons, news and documentaries originally made in Spanish-speaking countries for native speakers) coupled with a set of tools specifically designed for that purpose which are integrated into the video player:
- Verbatim subtitles in Spanish shown at the same time as English subtitles (you can turn either or both on or off)
- An integrated dictionary and flashcard system that both automatically looks up a word in the subtitles when you click on it as well as adds it to your flashcards for later review
- Exercises and quizzes about what you just watched that make you apply the new Spanish you just learned.
Check it out here (discounts for educators and institutions, by the way, I know a lot of you are teachers) or read my full review if you’d like more information (and screenshots of the system) first. Back to the article…
As I noted in my post about using comics in general, they’re typically great for beginners (or those of us more advanced but who don’t want to exert a lot of effort e.g. at bedtime) because they use very simple language, are short, and funny. Plus, there are several pictures per comic which act as visual memory aids with which you’ll associate any new words you learn – Spanish in the context of a funny comic (or movie or TV show, which is why I wrote a book about how to learn Spanish using such things) is much more likely to be remembered than Spanish in the context of a textbook or mere flashcard or something. Context matters.
Anyway, I just thought I’d quickly share this with you as it’s something I thought some of you would like and it’s very cheap if you want it. Let me know what you think!