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True! Nervous -- very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am! But why will you say that
I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses -- not destroyed -- not dulled them. Above
all was the -- oh, hey guys. This is Alex. Thanks for clicking, and welcome to this lesson
on "What books should I read?!" So very often, students are asking me -- especially at the
intermediate and advanced levels -- they say, "Alex, or Teacher, I want to improve my English.
I want to improve my vocabulary. Can you give me some suggestions of books and authors to
check out? What's easy enough for me, but challenging enough so that I can improve?"
Today I'm going to give you a couple of book suggestions. In addition to that, I'm also
going to give you ten vocabulary words that I've picked out from the books.
So today, to start out, I was reading "Tales of Mystery and Imagination" by famous American
author Edgar Allan Poe. And this is actually an excellent, excellent collection of stories.
However, it might be a little bit too advanced for intermediate speakers, and even for advanced
speakers it poses a challenge. It poses a challenge for native speakers. So what do
you do if you're interested in reading Edgar Allan Poe or other classic authors, but you
might find the language of the real book to be too challenging or too difficult. Well,
thankfully, there are, actually, a couple of companies out there who make graded versions
of books such as the Edgar Allan Poe "Tales of Mystery and Imagination", Sherlock Holmes,
"To Kill a Mockingbird", "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" -- any number of classics you can think
of. And I'm going to show you a couple of those today. So give me one moment.
Okay. This is a Penguin Reader. So Penguin Readers are really, really excellent because
what they do is they take famous authors, famous books and they make them accessible
to an English as a second language learner. So, again, if you're interested in starting
out to read English, this is an excellent way of doing that. So today, I'm going to
give you two suggestions. And if you're interested in horror, if you're interested in mystery,
if you're interested in detective stories, you really can't do much better than Edgar
Allan Poe and Arthur Conan Doyle. Now, you might not be familiar with the name Arthur
Conan Doyle, but you are probably familiar with the name Sherlock Holmes. And Arthur
Conan Doyle is, actually, the author of the Sherlock Holmes stories. Now, these two books here,
"Tales of Mystery and Imagination" by Edgar Allan Poe and "Sherlock Holmes Short Stories" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
are both short story collections. So if you feel a
little bit intimidated by reading a complete novel, another thing that's great about these
is a lot of these stories are five pages, six pages. So you can sit down -- you can
learn a lot of vocabulary, a lot of grammatical structure just with six pages of reading,
and you'll feel that you have read a complete story, okay?
So, again, I really, really recommend these, especially if you're into murder mysteries,
detective fiction, and you want something that is very short but gives you enough so
that you can learn a lot. And what I'm going to do now is, actually, give you guys ten
vocabulary words that I have chosen from these two books, and I'll give you the definitions.
We'll talk about some examples, and then you can finish the quiz and test your understanding as usual.
All right. Let's get to it. Okay, so the first word that we have here
is "disturb". Now, "disturb" is a verb which means to interrupt someone or to make someone
nervous or a little scared. So for example, if you see a bloody crime, like in a Sherlock
Holmes story, that might disturb you; it might make you feel a little weird, a little nervous.
Someone can also come in and "disturb" you while you are working.
The next word is "horizon". "Horizon" is a noun, and when you think of a picture of the
ocean, of the sea, and you think of the sun in the back, the "horizon" is that line; it's
the line where the land or the sea seems to meet the sky. Okay? So it's that line in a
picture. The next word is "immense". This is an excellent
vocabulary word. This is an adjective which just means extremely large. So you can say,
"The buildings in New York are immense" -- extremely large.
The next word is "mercy", which is a noun. Now, "mercy" is something that you show towards
a person or that you have for someone. So "mercy" is "kindness and a willingness to
forgive". So for example, if you're fighting with someone and you're beating them and they
say, "Stop! Stop! Stop! Have mercy! Show me mercy!" This means, like, "Show sympathy for
me! Be kind! Please forgive me! I give up!" Okay? You might see this a lot in, like, war
movies and stuff like Gladiator and all that stuff. Okay.
"Misery", "misery" is a noun. The adjective is "miserable". So "misery" just means "great
unhappiness", so you can live in "misery". And there's actually a book by Stephen King
of the same title, so you can check that out if you're into Stephen King and stuff like
that. So the next word is "consult". This comes
from "consultation", which is the noun form. "Consult" is to ask for advice or information.
So in the Sherlock Holmes stories, people with problems come to consult with Sherlock
Holmes. If you are having some kind of difficulty, some kind of physical illness, you should
probably consult a doctor. The next word is "forge". Now, to "forge"
is to illegally copy something. Usually, we talk about "forging money" or "forging a person's
signature". So maybe when you were a child and you had to get permission to go somewhere,
but you knew your parents would not let you go there, maybe you would forge your parents'
signature illegally -- copy it, essentially. Don't do that.
"Soil" -- okay. "Soil", we're talking about the noun, which is the top layer of earth
where plants grow. So if you want to start a garden in your house, you have to go and
buy some soil, okay? "Tremble": This is a verb which means "to
shake because of worry or fear or excitement". You can also tremble because you're cold,
okay? Very, very useful verb. And finally, a word that most of my students
in my life have had a difficult time pronouncing, and it's "thoroughly", "thoroughly". So "thur-oh-ly".
Okay? This is an adverb which means "completely" or "wholly". So "I was thoroughly surprised
to hear the news" -- completely. "The police searched the room thoroughly", okay?
So let's just do a quick listen and repeat with pronunciation of this vocab, guys. So
from the top: disturb, horizon, immense, mercy, misery, consult, forge, soil, tremble, thoroughly.
Okay, now that you have looked at these vocabulary items, you might be interested to know, "Where
can I get the books that Alex is talking about?" Attached to this video, you will find a link
to the Amazon website. You will also find a link to a list of authors who are in the
public domain. Now, what this means is that there are authors whose works, whose fiction
is freely available on the Internet for everyone to read because the copyright is so old. And
finally, you will also find a link to the Penguin Readers website, which you can check
out if you're interested in finding out which books are available in the Penguin Readers
collection. All right, guys. So, as always, you can test
your knowledge of this material by doing the quiz on www.engvid.com, and don't forget to
subscribe to my YouTube channel. Nevermore!




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青云 2016 年 4 月 21 日 に公開
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