Best Books for the JLPT N2 (Or Any Level)
If you’re planning to take the JLPT N1 or N2, then getting the right books and study guides is essential. There are tons of books out there, and I have used many of them. Here are the ones that I think are the best.
1. Best Overall Books: Kanzen Master: 92/100
The most complete books for studying and passing any level of the JLPT. For the N1 and N2, there are 5 books available, each focusing on a different section of the test (grammar, vocabulary, kanji, reading, listening). These books are recommended by most people who have taken the JLPT. It is known for its thoroughness and relevant material.
Why it’s good: Covers a lot of information, most of which is relevant for passing the JLPT. I used both the N1 and N2 versions. Information that is actually found on the tests and accurately covers the material you need to know for each level.
Why it’s bad: While the material is organized nicely, it is mostly all Japanese text (N1 and N2) and packed in there. Flipping through the book, it looks like pages and pages of text. This can be intimidating and can be hard to get through all of those Japanese text.
Overall Best Book for the JLPT. If you could only get one set of books for the JLPT, these are the ones you should go for. Takes a lot of motivation and concentration to study these books due to the fact that it is very text heavy with not much white space. However, if you master all of the material in these books, you have a very good chance of passing the JLPT on your first try.
2. Easiest Books to Study: Sou Matome books
Consists of 5 books, with each one concentrating on a different section of the JLPT test (grammar, vocabulary, kanji, reading, listening). I used all of the books for both the N1 and N2 level.
Why it’s good: Very easy to read and actually study without getting bored or overwhelmed. Nice categorizing of content so you learn similar material together. Also very nice structure. Broken up into 8 weekly sections. Finish just one lesson per day and you’ll complete a book in 2 months. Very good for learning the basics of N1 or N2 level material, but is best combined with other books to cover all the material on the JLPT tests.
Why it’s bad: People have said that it is missing explanations and material found on tests. I agree with this, but no book has 100% of the JLPT material in it. However, the books are very simple, which makes it easy to read and study but doesn’t offer in-depth explanations
Overall Impression: Highly recommended. Do a lesson per day from each book and you’ll be done in 8 weeks. I learned a lot from these books. I recommending using them together with the other books on this list.
3. Best Way to Prepare: Nihongo Noryoku Shiken Koshiki Mondaishu JLPT N2: 95/100
Practice exam that uses questions on past JLPT N2 test. Good resource to see what kind of questions will be on the test. Also, it is really good practice to take this test and time yourself to see what kind of pace you need to have in order to finish in time.
Overall Impression: Very helpful and prepares you to pass the JLPT N2. Just running through questions will give you an idea of what to expect on the real test.
Buy These Books Here: Nihongo Noryoku Shiken Koshiki Mondaishu JLPT N2
4. Quick and Easy Study Material: Nihongo Power Drill Nihongo JLPT N2
Questions and answer drill workbook. These questions will help you to see how well you remember the material you studied. It also helps you to see if you can apply the material you studied to answer test questions.
Most of the drills are multiple choice answer type of questions, which makes them easy to read and easy to study. Because of this, it added some necessary “spice” to my somewhat monotonous study routine. I recommend getting them if you already finished studying the other material on this page.
Overall Impression: While these questions are at the N2 level, they are not as accurate as the Koshiki Modaishu books listed above.
However, it is a nice way to learn JLPT N2 material when you’re too tired from studying the other JLPT N2 books. .The drills are simple and actually fun, so it breaks up the monotony in your study sessions while checking to see how well you know the JLPT N2 material.
If you used any books that you found helpful in learning the material and passing the JLPT N2, please let us know by leaving a comment below. Thanks!