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The Kanji Code: See the Sounds with Phonetic Components and Visual Patterns

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  15 ratings  ·  8 reviews
Memorising kanji readings is one of the biggest hurdles when learning Japanese. The Kanji Code teaches a systematic method of learning the readings of kanji or Chinese characters. By studying phonetic components and other visual clues, students of Japanese can reduce their reliance on rote memorisation and feel more in control of their learning.

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Paperback, 274 pages
Published February 15th 2019 by Ocha Press
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Malcolm Wellby
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In The Kanji Code, Natalie Hamilton has created an enjoyable and useful weapon for the non-native speaker’s kanji-learning arsenal. Clearly laid out and complemented by an attractive, uncluttered design aesthetic, over 189 pages Hamilton provides several different ways of organising kanji into codes. This codification aids the learner by mapping lines of meaning across kanji and in doing so allowing predictions to be made toward the pronunciation and/or meaning of previously unseen characters. H ...more
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent companion book for intermediate learners!

This book is frankly impressive. There is an awe-inducing level of academic rigor here, showing a huge investment of time and effort by the author. At first, it’s slightly intimidating (especially if you’ve always struggled with kanji, like me), but that said, there are a lot of gems to unearth here.

The author sets the context beautifully with an explanation of the different writing forms and their development through time. The historical ins
Renae Lucas-Hall
This textbook is ideal for beginners, intermediate or advanced Japanese language learners. Japanese teachers will love this textbook as well! If you’re serious about learning Japanese of if you’re planning to live in Japan you need to read this book and integrate its principles into your studies. I completed a BA with a major in Japanese language and culture at university and I remember just how difficult it was to learn hundreds of kanji characters. Using flashcards, I used to write each kanji ...more
Lindsay Jimenez
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is exceptionally amazing. I am still reading the book but I can tell you what I encountered this far. This book is very detailed and well written. From the very first pages you can feel how much hard work and research the author put into every line. I have personally been studying Japanese for quite a few years already, yet this book is teaching me kanji history that I’ve never been exposed to in all the books I’ve read. If you are really into learning kanji and Japanese the proper way ...more
Mayumi Parry
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting and informative! As a native speaker and Japanese teacher, it is sometimes hard for me to understand the difficulties that my students face. It gives me a different perspective. This is a great guidebook for both students and educators.
Ian Thomas
Mar 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Kanji Code: See the Sounds with Phonetic Components and Visual PatternsA great book for anyone studying for the JLPT N2 or N1. Unlike most kanji textbooks aimed at self-learners, this one is focused on the readings or pronunciation, rather than the meaning. And unlike many of those, it uses the real components and radicals to help you learn, rather than random images of baseball bats or guns, which gave nothing to do with kanji's roots. It gives a lot of really practical information about th ...more
Aug 16, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The theory/concept is extremely interesting. From a historical linguistics and morphology point of view, the book has some great parts. However, the application is rather inefficient. I personally didn't find it useful in helping me learn kanji.
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic work for studying the characters, aimed at students of basic and intermediate level. The kind of book that made me think, "I wish I had read this when I started".
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Natalie Hamilton is a writer, translator and lecturer in Translation Technology. She turned her focus to Japanese study while living and working in Japan’s rural Oita Prefecture on the JET Programme. She was awarded a Master of Japanese Translation in 2014, which included a linguistics dissertation entitled Cracking the ON Yomi Code. She is NAATI-Certified in Australia for professional translation ...more

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