Victor’s Adventures in Spain From basic Spanish to a jolly good level

Victor’s Adventures in Spain.slider-image

Our latest basic Spanish work book designed with you, the learner, in mind.

We firstly want to say ‘muchísimas gracias’ to everyone who has supported us in purchasing Victor’s Adventures. We have been absolutely blown away by the great feedback that we have had from so many people.

Sales are going really well and we are already making plans for the sequel in which Victor will be sure have even more ‘momentos difíciles y bonitos, también’ as he settles into life in Spain with Eliana. The follow up will not be set at such basic Spanish to begin with, but rather will commence at early intermediate and end at a very decent advanced level.

Amazon Reviews

We wanted to share with you some of the wonderful reviews that we have received in and in from some of the people who have bought our basic Spanish to advanced intermediate parallel text book. Out of the 28 reviews, 25 of them have been 5 stars.

Fun note: We did get one terrible, 3 star review, which totally slagged off the book from every angle imaginable. Fortunately,  when we looked at the reviewer’s history, it seems that every review the man has ever done has been terrible! So, on the positive side, we actually got his highest rating! (Normally, he only gives one star.) We have to say, however, that his review title made us laugh a lot and was entitled, “A book suitable for the visually impaired.” jeje

We have added below just some of the reviews that appear in Amazon but there are much more there. (P.S. None of the reviews have been written by family members. jajaja)


It delivers!

ByDmitry Podboritson 04 February 2015

Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase

This book propelled me from a beginner- to advanced intermediate level of Spanish over a span of several weeks. The rate at which I was able to absorb the grammar and vocabulary with Gordon and Cynthia’s method was several times faster than with other courses I’ve tried; moreover, this book’s material pushed a great deal of previously passively accumulated material (grammar and vocabulary) into the “active” part of my brain, where I can actually use it to, say, construct sentences and phrases, not just to (vaguely) recognize something that I’ve seen or heard before.

At the risk of sounding too partisan I would like to stick my neck out and say that the authors of this book may have discovered a “secret source” of language learning, which is (IMHO) —

(1) Create a character the reader cares about and is able to empathize with;
(2) Put him or her through all sorts of challenges and (mis)adventures, some more life-threatening than others, where they can use their buddying, but ever more confident Spanish in all kinds of (more or less) real-world situations;
(3) Spin a good yarn of a story permeating the entire book, so that when the reader reaches the end of a chapter, she wants to keep going in order to learn what happens next (rather than to put off the book for the day and switch to other activities)

Compare Gordon and Cynthia’s methodology to that of a well-known course which used to be advertised everywhere [named after a French doctor whose name starts with P]. Vis-a-vis Dr P’s course, I totally get that the memorization method called _graduated interval recall_ is firmly grounded in neural science, however if the dialogues are mostly sterile and there are no characters that I the listener can identify with or care about, then the emphasis is more or less on mechanistic, effortful memorization. In contrast, learning/absorbing Gordon and Cynthia’s material feels almost effortless in comparison with Dr P’s.

I hope that the positive feedback the authors get eventually gives them an incentive to write sequels such as Victor’s Adventures II, III and so forth; however in a larger sense I hope to see these types of considerations being incorporated into mainstream thinking on what makes language learning effective.


5.0 out of 5 stars Victory via Victor., 5 Dec. 2014


David Pullan “David Pullan” (Forest Row, United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Verified Purchase(What is this?)

This review is from: Victor’s Adventures in Spain: A Parallel Text and Audio Workbook (Paperback)

I’ve been learning Spanish for about a year now and I’ve noticed two things as an adult learner.

1. A lot of teachers are keen to teach you how to talk about the economy of Peru before they teach you how to order a meal (or send it back).
2. They teach you a very ‘correct’ Spanish that will mark you out as a Gringo immediately.

Well gracias a Gordon and Cynthea (and Victor) this book avoids both problems.

You learn practical Spanish at a rate that makes it stick, and it is Spanish as it is spoken. I opened the book and the first page I looked at explained the use of ‘habermelo dicho’ which I had recently been told by a teacher was incorrect. Well guess what? It might be a shortened form and colloquial but it is absolutely correct.

Oh yes, and I should add that the big bonus is getting to hear the beautiful and friendly voices of Gordon and Cynthea as you learn.


5.0 out of 5 stars THE BEST VALUE SPANISH WORKBOOK ON THE MARKET. – BUY IT!, 8 Jan. 2015


  1. M. Lovstrom– See all my reviews

This review is from: Victor’s Adventures in Spain: A Parallel Text and Audio Workbook (Paperback)

A superb workbook from the Lightspeed Spanish team of Gordon and Cynthia Smith-Duran, two very experienced Spanish teachers one a native of Newcastle UK and the other from Madrid.

It’s a parallel text workbook, Spanish on the left and English on the right, charting the simple story of an Englishman relocating to Spain to improve his Spanish and the various problems and adventures he encounters in doing so.

There are 32 chapters, the written spanish getting gradually more demanding as the story unfolds.
Each chapter is accompanied by a simple uncomplicated, grammar jargon-free lesson with simple exercises to complete for each chapter.

The book also gives you access to download 60 odd mp3 tracks which include the whole story being narrated by Cynthia the Madrilenian, chapter by chapter – (the narration speed gradually increasing ) – plus a series of tracks highlighting the modern idiomatic expressions and their meanings used in the story, also a series of tracks listing all the major verbs, nouns, adjectives, adverbs and conjunctions used in the story together with a very clever mnemonic way of remembering all of these and finally and really interstingly, there are a couple of hypnotic tracks also by Gordon -( who’s a practising hypnotherapist as well as a gifted Spanish teacher) – that endeavours to put you into the optimum learning state for the learning of the Spanish language.

The work book is in large clear print – which someone has criticised – but as far as I’m concerned, it is perfect for underlining and highlighting various grammatical points, unusual phrases and spanish syntax and making margin notes…which as a serious Spanish student myself, I found very useful.

The parallel text I found particularly helpful as I could practise translating from Spanish to English and the more difficult and demanding English into Spanish, just by putting my hand over the text that I wanted to translate.

Cynthia’s narration of the story on the mp3 files was perfect for me for the practising my Spanish pronounciation by mimicking her native Madrid accent.

The plot lines of the story- which someone also criticised – which is ridiculous in my opinion, as the book isn’t supposed to be a Booker Prize Winner…it’s a Spanish workbook for goodness sake!…I thought personally that the plotlines were very useful as it incorporated ‘real’ Spanish spoken in the street not the academic text book Spanish that’s usually found in workbooks.

For me the scenarios were ones that any visitor to Spain could find him or herself in:- ordering food and coffees and other drinks, trouble at airports, with the police, shopping etc, etc…..I won’t give the plot away

The amount of work gone into this book is incredible offering a student many different angles to approach the learning of Spanish, reading , writing, listening and translating.

They also give you list of other Spanish learning resources together with the Lightspeed Spanish Website that gives you over a 100 free 10 minute lessons in beginner, intermediate and advanced Spanish in podcast and YouTube video format…ALL FOR FREE!

This book is one of the very best learning resources that I’ve ever come across and I personally think the Lightspeed Spanish Website is THE best internet learning resource on Spanish that you can get and that Gordon and Cynthia are two very talented, very personable teachers.
Value for money ..I give this book 10/10 and I wish Gordon and Cynthia the very best of luck with it.

From a very satisfied customer and committed hispanophile


5.0 out of 5 stars highly recommended., 2 Jan. 2015


Andy Douglas (Leeds, UK) – See all my reviews

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This review is from: Victor’s Adventures in Spain: A Parallel Text and Audio Workbook (Paperback)

To my mind, this course concentrates on giving you lots of material (written and spoken) and keeps the explanations to a minimum (so far I’m at chapter 7 and skipped the explanations but that’s my preference). In my experience that is the way to really learn Spanish, complicated explanations won’t be remembered and have too many exceptions anyway – you must also get used to understanding the whole without understanding clearly every word.

This material also uses real Spanish language, something that often throws students of Spanish when engaging with Spanish natives.

The audio also increases gradually in speed. So far it’s a little slow for me but that’s nitpicking and skipping ahead I’ve heard it at a natural rate.

All in all, highly recommended.



5 of 6 people found the following review helpful

5.0 out of 5 stars me gusta mucho, 9 Dec. 2014


David Kiely – See all my reviews

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This review is from: Victor’s Adventures in Spain: A Parallel Text and Audio Workbook (Paperback)

The best program I have ever used. perfecto.- david kiely



5.0 out of 5 stars Love this book!, 12 Jan. 2015


Amazon Customer – See all my reviews

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This review is from: Victor’s Adventures in Spain: A Parallel Text and Audio Workbook (Paperback)

I have not yet read it all. But so far the parallel text is excellent and teaches you the ‘real’ spanish, not the ‘academic standard’ spanish that most other spanish books and courses teach you, (which also stands you out as a tourist I might add!) You will blend in like a local learning Spanish with Gordon & Cynthia