July 11


Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

By Gordon Gaffney

July 11, 2018

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

When learning English as a foreign language the problem is that almost all books are for all students learning the language. The same book is used in China, Russia, Spain, Portugal and Brazil etc. What I think is needed is a set of resources that consider the student’s native language.

Those standard books are good to help you learn the basics and for intermediate verb structures and general English, but they will not get you to proficiency quickly.  Why is that?

A student with very good English might still translate directly from their own language into English, people will understand you but it will not be how a native says it.

With some practice and study, a student with proficiency will not translate directly and will speak more naturally like a native.

Standard English books

In order to eliminate the errors that stop you from being proficient, the teacher needs to understand the student’s native language and then they can use tips, exercises and strategies to correct them quickly, easily, and with a little practice, permanently.

This means you will get higher scores in important exams such as IELTS/TOEFL or Cambridge exams, in fact in any exam in English.

If you don’t know the difference between IELTS and TOEFL you can read my guide here.

This is why I strongly believe the best book for Portuguese speakers to achieve English proficiency or those who want to speak English as close to perfectly as possible, is my own 2016 book available on this website for €6.99,

There is a Portuguese version also available for €6.99 here.

This book is the basis for my 2020 video course “Eliminate the Mistakes Portuguese Speakers Make in English” which is available on Udemy. The video course has more than 40% extra content compared to the book and is only €29.99/69.99R$, I recommend the video course, but hey, some people prefer the original eBook! You can read more about the video course and watch free videos here.

The book doesn’t show you the basics of English, you can find that information in any of the hundreds of general English books out there.  Instead, they deal with false cognates, structures, and common errors that are caused by the student speaking Portuguese as their first language. They also contain the key grammar points that people that speak Portuguese have problems with, including the present perfect.

All my students as well as those who have read and reviewed my book on Amazon Kindle, which you can see here, say that they didn’t even realise they were making these mistakes[what is the difference between notice and realise? You can find out here!].

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English
My Kindle book for sale on Amazon

One reason for this is that often they had teachers who were native Portuguese speakers so even the teacher didn’t realise they were making the mistakes themselves.

Some of these errors are vitally important, for example, the present perfect, others are minor errors but any student striving for proficiency or doing an important English exam should eliminate them.

Eliminate the 63 Most Common Mistakes Portuguese Speakers Make in English contains many essential and important mistakes and long grammar points, you can read a sample of the book here and it is available to buy on this site for €6.99, a little cheaper than it was for sale on Amazon.

This book was the result of hundreds of hours of teaching students English in Brazil. I noticed all students made the same mistakes and decided to write it so that if any student reads it, studies it, internalises the lessons and fixes them in their mind with practice, then they will eliminate all important errors and be close to proficiency or close to speaking English like a native

When I left Brazil in September 2017 most native English teachers charged at least R$70 per hour for a private class, which is €11.35 at the time of writing September 14th 2021. I believe that R$100/€16.20 per hour, or perhaps even more, is common now.   You will certainly learn more from this €6.99 book than in a 1-hour class with a native teacher which makes it an excellent investment.

Eliminate the 63 Most Common Mistakes that Portuguese Speakers Make in English

The essential resource for Portuguese Speakers which contains all major errors common in everyday speaking.  I will show you these errors, why you are making them and how to correct them, along with tips and strategies and an extensive grammar section specifically for people that speak Portuguese.

These mistakes are so common you are probably making them several times a day and you don’t realise it. Perhaps your teacher is making the same mistakes too.

Take a look at the story I tell in the book to demonstrate this point, is this style of English familiar to you?

My history

In the last week in my job, I was with a headache. It was so painful, so after I had a lunch I went out of my job. I wanted to know my neighbourhood so I went on an excited travel! I walked until a pharmacy, had many medicines but they didn’t have nothing for headaches. I couldn’t believe!

I saw on internet that in the end of the street, near from the 5 stars hotel, have other pharmacy. I was with a headache yet but after more 5 minutes I arrived there and went in the pharmacy.

However, in this moment, I am in my house. Everybody know I am very exciting because more late at night I will make a party!

Is this!

This is how a Portuguese speaker might tell the story in English, they do this by translating directly from Portuguese into English and unfortunately, this creates many errors.  Can you see the errors?

Now read this:

My story

Last week at work, I had a headache. It was very painful, so after I had lunch I left work. I wanted to get to know my neighbourhood so I went on an exciting trip! I walked as far as a pharmacy, there was a lot of medicine there but they didn’t have anything for headaches. I couldn’t believe it!

I saw on the Internet that at the end of the street, near the 5-star hotel, there is another pharmacy. I still had a headache but after 5 more minutes I arrived there and went into the pharmacy.

However, at the moment, I am at home. Everybody knows I am very excited because later tonight I will have a party!

That’s it!

This is how a native English speaker will tell the story. The first story, not history, contains all 28 of the most important errors I have in the first section of my book.

By studying the book, fixing the lessons in your mind and practising the exercises you will eliminate them and be speaking more confidently, more like a native speaker and be a lot closer to proficiency.

The book is available to buy in PDF, EPUB and MOBI formats for €6.99 on this site here which is a little cheaper than it was for sale on Amazon.

You can read a sample of the book here.

Reviews on Amazon

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

Best Books for Portuguese Speakers to Learn English

Here are 10 more important errors including word order in English, the difference between very and too and some helpful tips on verbs.

And another article with 9 more important errors and tips including the difference between to notice and to realise and an explanation of the verb to wonder. You can read it here.

You can also check out the Market Leader series of books if you want to focus on Business English or discover 5 english schools in Dublin here. I have also written a comprehensive review of 2 of the most popular English grammar books to use for reference.

Good luck with your English studies!

Gordon Gaffney

About the author

Gordon is The Irish English Teacher, creator of this blog and many products to help all students learning English as a second language, but with a focus on Portuguese speakers.