What to get at the Foreign Language Bookstore, Shanghai


I’ve studied at Shi-Da and now am at Shanghai, having to make the change to Simplifed Characters.

What would you recommend getting at the FLB Shanghai or perhaps somewhere else?

I almost finished the second part of the second book PAVC (Shi-Da), so on one hand those beginner books seem to be so boringly easy, yet I can’t go to the more advanced levels as I’m not familiar with the characters.

What I’m looking for is something with lots of text + pinyin, so I will absorb the characters through reading. If it has a CD that you could listen to over and over again it would be just perfect.


Any ideas?

Then get that! Just like kids books in Taiwan have Zhuyin Fuhao, in China they have Hanyu Pinyin.

I think there have been many kinds of Chinese textbooks that you will like in Shanghai .

What a remarkably valuable contribution to the conversation.

Although this isn’t a textbook, you can’t go wrong picking up a copy of the ABC Chinese-English Comprehensive Dictionary, which is also published in a mainland edition that should be available at the FLB.

Also strongly recommended: Chinese Romanization: Pronunciation and Orthography, which doubles as a very useful grammar.

Well, I’ve never been to Shanghai, so I’ve no idea what’s for sale at the FLB there. But I’d imagine it’s huge (if my experience in Beijing holds).

One thing that might be very useful is a book called “Jianhuazi, Fantizi, Yitizi Bianxi Shouce” – a Handbook for Recognizing Simplified, Traditional, and Variant-form Characters. The main body text is organized alphabetically in pinyin, and there’s an index organized by stroke count subdivided by radical. Now, being a PRC book, naturally the simplified characters aren’t in the main body text :unamused: but they’re in the index.
Basically anything that can teach you the patterns of simplification is good. There’s only several hundred characters that are simplified, and most of them are done in a pretty regular way by simplifying the radical. (It’s the others you have to look out for – turning nice clear elements into a collection of five chicken scratches, ::shudder::slight_smile: But it’ll get you going.

Now wouldn’t it have been great if I told you what it looked like. Sorry, no CJK input… but the pinyin is written on the cover. The editor’s name is Hu Shuangbao (Lake [w/out the water radical] Double Treasure). The book itself is maybe 1/4" thick and 7.5" tall, dark green on the spine.

…hope you can find it.

I’ve heard (read in the Shanghai newspapers) that a FLB opened in Taipei. Anybody been there? What’s the size of the shop and do they offer the same stuff as in Shanghai?

I remember one of my American friends bought a book titled “Chinese Business Etiquette” in a Shanghai Foreign bookstore (sorry, I don’t know which one). It is quite a good book which contains the psychological analysis of the Chinese people and why they like to socialize through having dinner and liquor/wine, etc.

I think it is really a helpful book for foreiengers who came to China for his first time.

“Chinese Business Etiquette” is from Scott D. Seligman, published by Warner Books. You get it in Hong Kong at the airport too.

But I don’t believe that this is the kind of book ‘guest’ was looking for…