Item description for Hide This French Book by Eve-Alice Roustang-Stoller...
This isn't your parents' language book! It's not the French and Spanish you learned in school. This uncensored language guide has everything you need to speak real French or Spanish, from cool lingo to hard-core insults. Whether you're a student who's eager to learn street speak, a lover of French or Spanish who wants to talk the language of love, or a traveler ready to really hang out with natives, you'll be up-to-date on the expressions used by the masses.
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Reviews - What do customers think about Hide This French Book?
Hide this french book (berlitz hide this book) May 19, 2007
Very interesting topics in this book. For travelers to actually go out and have fun and very useful with the audioguide MP3 that can be downloaded from the website.
Audio Files at Website Add Value Aug 22, 2006
I picked-up this slim phrase book to pass my time while waiting for a train on a recent business trip. My attention was caught by its black cover and tongue-in-cheek presentation as an insider's guide to vernacular phrases with an emphasis on the risque' and rude. Mock warning labels drive home the point. Most (not all!) of the words and phrases are in fact pretty tame. I've spent considerably more time with this book than my two hour plus train trip thanks in part to a website the publishers have set up. The book's street smart contents are available at the website in MP3 format. With a little expertise (and freely available iTunes software) the audio files can be converted to more conventional CD (CDA) files for all your older CD players. A Berlitz rep emailed me that managing the files in this way for personal use is not a copyright violation. The website in conjunction with the book raises the value of this inexpensive niche effort. Hearing the audio files turns a cute marketing ploy into useful learning tool.
Le Mot Juste Dec 24, 2005
For those of you who are intrigued by the argot tossed about in slang books like "Merde", "Merde Encore, the "Street French" series, "Streetwise French and "Tune Up Your French, Berlitz's 94 page "Hide This French Book" will provide more than enough hip topics and expressions to satisfy even the most passionate slang junkie.
Especially geared towards students and those of us who want to know evolving street speak, Berlitz actually prints a two page disclaimer as a preface warning French speaking wannabes that some of the language cited in the book is to be used sparingly and in familiar company that will not judge you as crude.
With this in mind, the author, Eve-Alice Roustang-Stoller demarcates the crudest, rudest and crassest of her lingual tidbits using fetching forewarning icons of thermometers depicted as either with the mercury at a spicy half-way point to label the pretty vulgar or with the mercury bursting to the way-too-hot overspill point to indicate the totally offensive. Thankfully and shame-savingly, she provides gender symbol icons to inform the reader when a phrase is to be used only when describing a particular sex and a website where one can actually hear the correct pronunciation.
The book covers a wide spectrum of situations beginning with the basic greeting expressions, and moving through dating, love, sex, homosexual life, sports, games, shopping, fashion, body parts, technology, gossiping, food, partying, friendship, entertainment and ending with 6 ultimate French gestures. Sidebars like "Un-Censored" (the really vulgar skinny), "Oops" ("I cant' believe I said that" embarrassing stories), "the Scoop" (what you need to know to stay in the know) and "Fact" (cultural similarities and differences) along with cartoon-like illustrations interject a little eye-moving fun into the fast-paced format.
Published in 2004, the language in this book proves to be up-to-date when inspected by a 30-something native French speaker. The only caveat? Obviously, a fifty-year old speaks differently than a fifteen year old; language used in a club differs greatly from that at the dinner table. The language in HTFB most definitely can be offensive when used in the wrong situation and by the wrong person. Perhaps les gros mots don't attract much attention until a non-French person makes use of them, so my tip is to be careful as you expand your language range.
Bottom line: Recommended, but depending on your age and the situation, use with the utmost care. "Tune Up Your French" by Natalie Schorr provides a more thorough treatment of the whens and whys of slang usage, but this books format is sure to have more eye appeal for a student.
Incroyable! Mar 23, 2005
I have found this guide to be among the most helpful in regards to colloquial French: while others contain extensive information, they lack phonetical instruction. However, Berlitz has an online audio site that readers can visit to actually hear the slang spoken by native speakers. Therefore, "francophiles" of all speaking levels (beginning to advanced) can master the phrases presented in Ms. Roustang-Stoller's book! Other works on French slang casually present phrases that may offend native speakers so as to humor English-speaking readers. For example, one would not approach an attractive person and exclaim, "Quelle cul t'as!" (Toned-down meaning: "What buttocks you have!"). Indeed, a less extreme pick-up would most likely be in order. This being said, the book certainly presents its wealth of phrases and idioms in an amusing fashion, but it singles out ones that particularly are not appropriate in everyday conversation. Along with ratings and online resources, Roustang-Stoller dashes her book with sidebars about French culture and gives the reader conversational examples. Thereby, the active reader can not only master the phrases but apply them appropriately. I just lent my friend this guide on his school trip to France, and he said that it came in handy numerous times. Even if you speak school-taught French perfectly, it really helps to know conversational slang for real-life situations. So, if you don't know a lick of French and want to get a few laughs, or you are a high school student in French V AP who is traveling to Paris in the near future, this book is perfect for you!
A great guide Sep 3, 2004
This book is not for the beginning French student who wants to anger the teacher for laughs... It is for the intermediate-advanced student who wants to know the French you never learn in school. Not necessarily "naughty" French (though there is a book for that), but common street expressions that are very handy if you want to go far with the language.
Hide This French Book provides not only the expressions useful for conversations related to dating, computers, people, and much more, but also literal English translations as well as American equivalents wherever possible. It is also strewn with fun facts and information related to French culture and the phrases you are using, so you feel that you know as well as any native exactly what it is you're saying, rather than just repeating what you read in a textbook.
I recommend this in particular for any high school student such as myself who is going into AP French or planning on traveling to France.