Book Review – Inazuma Eleven GO Kanji 240 Ji! Kanpeki Drill

Title: Inazuma Eleven GO Kanji 240 Ji! Kanpeki Drill
Release Date: August 2012
Publisher: Shogakukan
ISBN: 9784091021472
Size: 10 x 8.2 x 0.4 inches
Pages: 127
Color: Select colors
Binding: Glossy softcover
Price: ¥552 (before tax if applicable)
Where to purchase:

A super fun way to learn Japanese kanji from elementary year 1 (80 characters) and year 2 (160 characters) for a combination of 240 kanji!
The book comes with a page of gorgeous reward stickers!

Personal ratings:
Physical Book/Paper quality: 9/10. It’s meant to be used and written on as a workbook. Yet even for that, the paper quality is still nice!
Art Content: 9.5/10. I honestly was just expecting a whole bunch of stock photos from the anime to be used in the workbook. While it does have a small share of those stock photos, there’s muchhhh more use of adorable original illustrations to make things interesting. It does get a wee bit awkward when those illustrations are used repeatedly, but my guesstimate is there are close to 180 different illustrations for those 240 kanji characters.
Text Content: 9.5/10. A very important part of the book since its original purpose is to help kids learn their kanji characters! Fair warning however, since this book is sold from JAPAN, it is assumed that the user already knows basic Japanese vocabulary and grammar.
Overall: 9.5/10. This workbook is awesome for anyone who has already learned hiragana/katakana and is trying to make that leap into the giant world of kanji. The illustrations were a pleasant surprise when I got the book, and I can see the effort they put into creating the workbook. Even at my advanced level of Japanese, basics will always be important. Even I learned a few things from this book (mostly about stroke order, lol).
For those who can READ the material but have trouble understanding the vocabulary, I recommend quickly inputting the romaji into Nihongoresources to learn the vocabulary!

The stickers and index page:

As you can see, this is not a book for English-speakers, so all the instructions and tips are in Japanese. A good majority of the book is drilling the stroke order of kanji, which is the most basic way to remember these kanji. Another good thing is that it also shows example uses of the kanji while you’re practicing the stroke order:

Lots of cute illustrations:

Other drills besides the writing practice, such as filling in the blanks with kanji of body parts:

The most “advanced” this book gets is writing a mini-essay. The example one is of course about soccer…:

The back has answer keys like any proper self workbook:

Here’s where you put the stickers, and that trio illustration… 😀 :

If I were still in college taking my Japanese 1, this would’ve been the perfect leisure practice book for me. But I’m sure a lot more people learning Japanese out there could make better use of this book!! 🙂 If you’re the type like me who started out with only some vocab picked up from watching too much subtitled anime, you should be able to figure your way out through this workbook.

*edit* May 23, 2014: I’ve been made aware that this book is now out of print, making it a collector’s item as well, too!

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