Why reading is one of the most fun ways to learn English

Who doesn’t love a good story? And while a book can keep you entertained for hours, reading one written in English can also help to expand your vocabulary and knowledge of grammar. E-readers and tablets make learning English even easier because if you don’t know...

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Who doesn’t love a good story? And while a book can keep you entertained for hours, reading one written in English can also help to expand your vocabulary and knowledge of grammar.

E-readers and tablets make learning English even easier because if you don’t know a word, you can simply click on it to read its definition. Others recommend listening to and reading text at the same time as an excellent way to enhance the learning process.

We’ve previously explored some great novels that can help you to improve your English language skills, and our blog readers gave us some more suggestions of books that are both enjoyable and useful. We hope you find their suggestions helpful…

Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom

Several of our blog readers recommended this book, including Louisa Leung, Javier Casas, Prabha Narayanan, Pâñkâj Díxít and Dana S Cornelia. Tuesdays with Morrie is a memoir by newspaper sports columnist Mitch Albom, who recounts the time spent with his 78-year-old sociology professor, Morrie Schwartz, at Brandeis University, who was dying from a debilitating disease. Written in short, simple sentences, along with sections of conversation, the book is a great way for English language learners to learn vocabulary while improving communication skills.

The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho

Blog reader Andra Mare picked the English translation of this novel as his favourite for English language learning. It follows a young Andalusian shepherd in his journey to Egypt, after having a recurring dream of finding treasure there. Andra says it is easy to read in terms of vocabulary and tenses, so should help any learners in both of those areas.

The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath

Another favourite among our blog readers, this book is the only novel written by poet and author Sylvia Plath. Originally published under the name of Victoria Lucas, it is semi-autobiographical, with the names of places and people changed. Renata Woldan picked this as her favourite novel, and the recounting of a series of flashbacks is helpful for English language learners wishing to add to their vocabulary and grammar skills.

The Giver – Lois Lowry

Blog readers Séverine Claire, Sabrine Rouissi, Dru Hnn, Felix Exhibit and Palden Phuntsho Wangchuk all chose this novel as their favourite. Written by Lois Lowry, it is set in a society where individuality and choice don’t exist. The novel is on many reading lists in educational establishments around the world and is recommended by many for developing appetites for reading. Written in short sentences and using simple grammar, the book is a good way for language beginners to learn more about English.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid – Jeff Kinney

Children’s books are a great place to start for English beginners as the language used is simple and so is the grammar. Blog reader Rushikesh Kohre picks this one as his book of choice, and the great news is there are more than ten books in the series. This first book introduces the lead character Greg and his best friend Rowley. Enjoy the funny stories about what they get up to while you add to your knowledge of the English language.

Someone Like You – Roald Dahl

These short stories are great to read if you want to learn more about the English language but you don’t like reading for a long time. Although Roald Dahl is a children’s author, these stories contain murder, horror and science fiction. Blog reader Magdalena Wilczyńska picks this as her book and her favourite story is Galloping Foxley, which is about a man called Perkins who takes revenge on a bully he remembers from school.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – CS Lewis

Blog reader Sid Sawant loves this book, which is about some children who access a hidden magical land by going through the back of an old wardrobe. The author takes great care to describe scenes in detail, so it is a great way to learn more descriptive words in the English language. If you like fantasy books, then this is a great choice for you.

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