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Any good Japanese language books?

The best textbook I ever had was the one by Alfonso. A two-book set. It also had tapes. It was expensive, but I have never seen anything better. What books do other people prefer?
Originally posted by EscaFlowne
Any good books that would be a good help to learn japanese language??

I've been told that "Japanese for Busy People" is a good book for self-learners
I use a bunch of things:

Pimsleur (for speaking)

KanjiPower (program) and "Remembering The Kanji" by James Heisig (for kanji)

ReadWrite (Hiragana and Katakana)

All three are working well for me.
I have A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar and A Dictionary of Intermediate Japanese Grammar, and they are good books for grammar (big surprise, eh?). It depends on your skill level, though. They are arranged like encyclopedias with entries for each grammatical pattern (i.e. X wa Y desu/da), so if you are a complete beginner it may be difficult to get anything out of them. Once you understand basic syntax I believe these books to be great for reference and learning. They provide many example sentences (with literal and natural translations), detailed formation rules, and explanatory notes under each entry. I just wish that there was an advanced version.
"Japanese for Busy People" is an excellent book, as it breaks things down and tells you when to use it and why it's used, etc. There's also "Japanese for Young People" (made by the same company), which teaches the reader by example. The latter is usually best when being taught by a native Japanese teacher, the former is good for self study. I also have "Japanese - Comprehensive Grammar" which deals with advanced grammar, speech patterns, etc. I also like it because it teaches you how Japanese really speak (i.e. non-textbook style), and it shows many examples, which for me is key. I highly reccomend learning textbook (formal) style first though.
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