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Book Reviews

Book Review by James Greenwald

The following is a book review of Latin Alive! Book 1 by James Greenwald, a well regarded high school Latin teacher.  We greatly appreciate Mr. Greenwald’s kind support.  If you would like to share a review of Latin Alive! with us, please feel free to reply to this post, or email your review to lriley@classicalsubjects.com.

 

 

            Over the last three decades many Latin teachers turned from deductive, grammar-based texts such as Jenny to the (supposedly) inductive Ecce and Cambridge series.  I am one such person.  I have been dissatisfied by Ecce (sappy stories) and Cambridge (snail’s pace on grammar).  On the opposite front, new Jenny was so awful that a black market developed for old Jenny.

 

            Aside from pedagogy cost should be a factor in choosing a text.  Most hard cover texts are absurdly overpriced.  Bolchazy-Carducci stepped into the breach; now Clasical Academic Press offers a worthy competitor.

 

            Latin Alive! offers a relentless grammatical approach with comprehensive explanations more appropriate for high school than middle school.  If the teacher can wait six chapters for stories, the wait is well worth it.  The continuous narrative of Roman history is well conceived and executed with a genuine love for the Latin language. 

 

            I’d prefer an earlier introduction to the third declension with a case by case approach, but the authors do explain much grammar very well.  Since Allen and Greenough is online, I recommend the prospective student keep Latin Alive!  as a reference for the entire career.  If I weren’t retiring, I’d adopt this text.

 

                                                                        James Greenwald

                                                                        Latin Instructor at

                                                                        Marquette University High School