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Of course we recommend getting to a French-speaking country ASAP, winning over a French boo, and immersing yourself daily in millefeuilles and vin rouge, but many times, it’s just not the right time. No problem. We’ve put together a list of the resources we have literally used along the way of our years of learning the language of love. Every book we have listed here has literally passed through our hands in the past few years, and although we have read many, many more French books, these are the ones that worked for us, and that we think would work for you. Profitez bien!
Most people say they “don’t care about grammar” and “just want to speak the language.” Behind any language, is a clear set of grammar rules, so unless you plan on memorizing 10,000 expressions from a phrase book, you should invest in a grammar book and speak for yourself!
Sounding like you speak French is more than just learning grammar. To sound très français, you need to either live among the French and pick up their body language and daily cuss words, or buy one of these slang-filled books:
Part of mastering a language is mastering its culture. Knowing your camemberts from your bries is just as important as knowing your cou from your cul. It’s all very necessary. Here are our favorite novels set in France and helpful, funny Parisian guides.
Best websites to learn French
IELanguages: Your straight-up, give-it-to-me guide to languages, in this case French. IELanguages is perfect for those language learners who don’t need thirteen chapters to go over the basics of a language, and for those who have probably already learned a romance language.
FluentU: A newsletter you should sign up for if you’re a fan of blog titles like 8 Catchy French Songs You’ve Gotta Download ASAP or 11 French Phrases You’ve Gotta Learn to Impress Natives.
Oui C’est Ça: One of the best, if not the best blog for learning French is a fun and funny way.
French Morning: Need a dose of news but want to knock out your daily language lesson too? Sign up for French Morning’s newsletters and skim through their site to get the 411 on what’s happening in major US cities, or read the “Édition Nationale” for full-blown French news.
Tex’s French Grammar: If you’re looking for more quirky, memorable visuals, and we’re talking visuals of armadillos (yes, the animal) named Tex and Tammy, then this is your site. Content is broken down by grammar topic, and you’ve got dialogues and exercises from…the two armadillos Tex and Tammy.
- Déja Vu: An oddly-intriguing podcast series about a mysterious love story. Kind of will remind you of the Twilight series and you’ll probably get hooked after the first few podcasts to find out what happens.
- Ma France: A 24-unit series featuring videos on different France-related topics. You can turn on subtitles, and play games after videos to see how much…ahem, or how little, you understood.