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Best Kanji Books You Should Enjoy

Until you’ve consumed all of the best Kanji books, can you even claim to be a true fan?

Remembering the Kanji 1: A Complete Course on How Not to Forget the Meaning and Writing of Japanese Characters (2011)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyUpdated to include the 196 new kanji approved by the Japanese government in 2010 as “general-use” kanji, the sixth edition of this popular text aims to provide students with a simple method for correlating the writing and the meaning of Japanese characters in such a way as to make them both easy to remember.
Author(s): James W. Heisig

Japanese Kanji for Beginners: (JLPT Levels N5 & N4) First Steps to Learn the Basic Japanese Characters (Includes CD-Rom) (2017)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyThe Japanese language has three basic writing systems, kanji (Chinese characters) and hiragana, and katakana–two phonetic sets of characters. This handy book teaches you a new mnemonics-based method to read and write the 430 highest-frequency kanji characters.
Author(s): Timothy G. Stout, Kaori Hakone

The Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary: Revised and Expanded (2013)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyWith The Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary: Revised and Expanded, learners finally have at their fingertips accurate and in-depth information on all the kanji prescribed by the Japanese government.
Author(s): Jack Halpern, Y. H. Tohsaku

The Complete Guide to Japanese Kanji: (JLPT All Levels) Remembering and Understanding the 2,136 Standard Characters (2016)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyThis unique Kanji study guide provides a comprehensive introduction to all the Kanji characters on the Japanese Ministry of Education’s official Joyo (“General Use”) list—providing detailed notes on the historical development of each character as well as all information needed by students to read and write them.
Author(s): Christopher Seely, Kenneth G. Henshall, et al.

Kanji From Zero! 1: Proven Techniques to Learn Kanji with Integrated Workbook (Second Edition) (Volume 1) (2016)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyKanji From Zero! is perfect for current students of Japanese who already know how to read hiragana and katakana. The book isn’t just another kanji reference book. Instead it’s designed to teach kanji and associated culture and related words to give a connection to kanji that other books ignore.
Author(s): Mr George Trombley, Mrs Kanako Hatanaka, et al.

(New Edition) Basic Kanji Book -Basic Kanji 500- Vol.1 (2015)

 Best Kanji Books You Should Enjoy(New Edition) Basic Kanji Book -Basic Kanji 500- Vol.1
Author(s): Chieko Kano, Yuri Shimizu , et al.

The Kanji Code: See the Sounds with Phonetic Components and Visual Patterns (2019)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyMemorising kanji readings is one of the biggest hurdles when learning Japanese. The Kanji Code teaches a systematic method of learning the readings of kanji or Chinese characters.
Author(s): Natalie J Hamilton

Kanji Pict-O-Graphix: Over 1,000 Japanese Kanji and Kana Mnemonics (1992)

 Best Kanji Books You Should Enjoy“Kanji Pict-o-Graphix offers an engaging way to learn and memorize Kanji.”—Rocky Mountain Region Japan Project”A fun book for studying kanji. The illustration reveals more of its contents and method than any description ever could.”—Japan Times”It is a very nice book, simple and pretty effective. A useful addition to the library of all beginners who aspire to learn Japanese.
Author(s): Michael Rowley

Learning Japanese Kanji Practice Book Volume 1: (JLPT Level N5 & AP Exam) The Quick and Easy Way to Learn the Basic Japanese Kanji (2015)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyLearning Japanese Kanji Practice Book is intended for beginning students or experienced speakers who need to practice their written Japanese. Kanji are an essential part of the Japanese language and together with kana (hiragana and katakana) comprise written Japanese. This book presents the most commonly used kanji characters.
Author(s): Sato Ph.D., Eriko

The Key To Kanji: A Visual History of 1100 Characters (English and Japanese Edition) (2010)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyThe Key to Kanji: A Visual History of 1100 Characters is a one-of-a-kind reference for learners at any level! Based in etymological research, this detailed guide takes away the difficulty of learning these Japanese characters.
Author(s): Noriko Kurosawa Williams

BASIC KANJI BOOK 2 Books Bundle Set , Kihon 500 Book Vol.1 & Vol.2 for Learning Japanese , Orignal Sticky Notes (2010)

 Best Kanji Books You Should EnjoyThese books are textbooks just for learning kanji. Each lesson covers about 10 characters and begins with a section called “About the kanji” which gives interesting background on the kanji you are about to learn. Next comes writing and reading lessons for each kanji. Lastly, there is a longer reading section followed by a game or some quiz.
Author(s): Chieko Kano, Hiroko Takenaka, et al.

Best Kanji Books You Should Enjoy

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Library Genesis and download some kanji books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

Reading & Writing Japanese: A Workbook for Self-Study: A Beginner's Guide to Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji (Free Online Audio and Printable Flash Cards)

Author(s): Eriko Sato
ID: 3128792, Publisher: Tuttle Publishing, Year: 2022, Size: 8 Mb, Format: pdf

Intermediate Japanese Textbook: An Integrated Approach to Language and Culture: Learn Conversational Japanese, Grammar, Kanji & Kana: Online Audio Included

Author(s): Michael L. Kluemper, Lisa Berkson
ID: 3432308, Publisher: Tuttle Publishing, Year: 2022, Size: 49 Mb, Format: epub

The Trail to Kanjiroba: Rediscovering Earth in an Age of Loss

Author(s): William deBuys
ID: 3434265, Publisher: Seven Stories Press, Year: 2022, Size: 7 Mb, Format: epub

Please note that this booklist is not definite. Some books are truly best-sellers according to Washington Post, others are drafted by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant links you could recommend? Leave a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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