Wreck

Do you know the verb “to wreck“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Carlos: What happened to your house?

Dana: My daughter had a party here. She invited many people and they wrecked it. It will cost a lot of money to fix it.

Does it mean:

a) to destroy

b) to enjoy

c) to decorate

d) to repair

The answer is below!↓

home real estate

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Answer: a) to destroy

 

Treacherous

Do you know the adjective “treacherous“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

David: How are the roads?

Steve: They are treacherous. There is ice everywhere. You should take care going home.

Does it mean:

a) dangerous

b) smooth

c) crowded

d) empty

The answer is below! ↓

car road snow winter

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Answer: a) dangerous

Smashing!

Do you know the adjective “smashing“? (This adjective is used in informal British English.) Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Ruby: I’m ready for the party. How do I look?

Karen: You look smashing! That dress really suits you.

Does it mean:

a) terrible

b) OK

c) wonderful

d) angry

The answer is below!↓

group of people

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Answer: c) wonderful

[Short Story] The Present

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Cora has been married for six months. She lives with her husband in a small town outside the city. Houses in the city are very expensive, so they bought a house with a big garden about an hour by train from the city. Brian, her husband, takes the train to work every day. He works in a bank. Cora doesn’t have a job. Sometimes she gets bored. Brian bought her a dog for Christmas. The dog is very naughty but he is good company during the day.

Today is Cora’s birthday. I wonder what Brian has bought me? she thinks. I hope it’s something very pretty.

Brian gets up very early in the morning. He has to take a train at 7:00am. He always brings Cora a cup of tea in bed before he leaves for work. Today he brings Cora’s tea and a parcel wrapped in beautiful paper with a big ribbon tied around it.

“Happy birthday!” he says. “I hope you like your present!”

Cora puts her teacup on the table next to the bed. She unwraps the present.

“Oh,” she says.

“Aren’t they great?” says Brian. He is very pleased. “They will be perfect for working in the garden!”

Cora looks at her present. It is a pair of black rubber boots. Cora is very unhappy, but she doesn’t say so. She knows that Brian thinks it is a very good present.

“Oh, thank you!” she says. “They look very useful!”

“I have to go,” says Brian. “I’ll see you tonight. I have made a reservation at the local hotel for dinner.” He kisses Cora and leaves the house.

Cora is very sad. Then after she gets out of bed, she starts to feel angry.

What a terrible present! I hate these boots. I wanted a romantic present!

She throws the boots into the garbage bin and goes into the living room to watch TV.

A little later she hears the mailman. The mailman rides a motor scooter. It stops outside their house.

Maybe my mother has sent me a present, thinks Cora. She knows I like pretty things.

Cora goes to the door. She wants to go to the mailbox, but it is raining heavily.

I didn’t hear the rain because I had the TV on very loud. Where are my outdoor shoes? Did the dog take my shoes? Where did he hide them?

Cora looks everywhere, but she can’t find her shoes.

The dog is out in the garden. Cora opens the kitchen door and shouts, “Bad dog!”

The dog runs to her. He is wagging his tail. He is a very friendly dog. Then Cora sees the garbage bin. I could wear those ugly black rubber boots, she thinks.

Cora goes to the garbage bin and takes the boots. She takes off her slippers and puts on the boots.

Oh no! They are ugly and they don’t fit! They are too small and very uncomfortable. Why did Brian buy these?

She feels very angry. She takes the boots off, and throws them into the garden. One of the boots lands upside down. Cora can see something on the ground. It is a small box. She runs into the garden in her bare feet. She picks up the box. She takes the other boot and shakes it. Another box falls on the ground.

Cora takes the small boxes back into the kitchen. She sits down at the table and opens them.

There is a beautiful pair of earrings in one box and a matching necklace in the other box.

 I am very lucky. The garbage man will come soon and he will empty the garbage bin. Brian is a wonderful husband but sometimes he has very crazy ideas!

 

 

 

Deafening

Do you know the adjective “deafening“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Alison: The noise from the party next door is deafening!

Robin: I know. I can’t study here. Let’s go to the library.

Does it mean:

a) very quiet

b) very soft

c) very loud

d) dangerous

The answer is below!↓

people dancing inside building

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Answer: c) very loud

Fall out with (someone)

Do you know the phrase “to fall out with (someone)“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Karen: Why aren’t you talking to your brother?

Tom: I fell out with him last week. He said bad things about my friend.

Does it mean:

a) move away from someone

b) have an argument and stop being friendly with someone

c) have an argument and make friends with someone

d) hit someone

The answer is below! ↓

 

backlit blur boys brother

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Answer: b) have an argument and stop being friendly with someone

Ravenous

Do you know the adjective “ravenous“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Ellie: We’ve been hiking all morning. We should take a rest and have something to eat.

Rob: Good idea. I’m tired and ravenous.

Does it mean:

a) very hungry

b) very thirsty

c) very tired

d) lacking energy

The answer is below!↓

accomplishment action adult adventure

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Answer: a) very hungry

Penniless

Do you know the adjective “penniless“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Lauren: Have you found a new job yet?

Jane: No. But if I don’t find one soon, I’ll be penniless.

Does it mean:

a) unsuccessful

b) have no money

c) bored

d) scared

The answer is below!↓

photo of a woman thinking

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Answer: b) have no money

Despise

Do you know the verb “to despise“? Read the conversation below. Can you guess the meaning?

Katrina: I despise people who hurt animals.

Natalie: So do I. If I see someone treating an animal badly, I get really angry.

Does it mean:

a) like

b) hate

c) watch

d) admire

The answer is below!

animal beagle canine close up

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Answer: b) hate

[Easy English Blog] Starting I Talk You Talk Press

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I started I Talk You Talk Press five years ago with two friends. We have all taught English for many years in Japan. We always told our students to read English, because we believe reading is a very important part of English learning. Some of our students listened to our advice and read graded readers. Other students didn’t. They said they didn’t have time, or graded readers were too difficult.

So, we started writing original stories for those students. We knew our students’ English levels, so we wrote stories they could understand. The students were happy that we wrote stories for them. Sometimes, they recommended the stories to other students too. We were also happy that our students enjoyed our stories and were reading in English.

One day, we thought, “if our students enjoy our stories, maybe other English learners will enjoy our stories too.” So we decided to publish our stories as graded readers. Before we started, we spend a year researching publishing and graded reader levels. Then, we started publishing our stories in 2013. We published them on Amazon Kindle, Kobo and Apple. Now, people all over the world are reading our stories. This makes us very happy. Our students are also very happy. We ask them what kind of stories they want to read, and they give us feedback about our stories. They feel special, because we write the stories for them!

Now, I Talk You Talk Press has 60 graded readers. We plan to publish a new one every month. This keeps up busy, but we enjoy it. 🙂

Heather@ I Talk You Talk Press