This was the text for my first year of Japanese in college. Just a few of my thoughts on it:The text sometimes comes across as dated, being about 25 years old.While the JSL Romaji differs from Hepburn, it does have its advantages.The explanations are very thorough, but I find them to be overwhelming and wordy. My professor did a much better job explaining the same concepts but breaking them down so that they were easier to grasp.The vocabulary is very limited; for what is supposed to be a years worth of study I would have liked to see a lot more.It uses a series of Core Conversations and Drills to help students progress in speaking and listening. There is a software that should go along with the text, but its about 15 years old and runs with an ancient version of Quick Time. I was able to use it on an older computer, but I honestly wish that I had not wasted my money on it. Its unfortunate because it really is a good program that goes hand in hand with the exercises in the book.If you can use the drills with the software, a partner or a recording, they are very helpful in practicing your speech. In the end though, I personally would not recommend this text, especially for a self-learner.