10 JLPT N1 Textbooks for 2022

The N1 is considered the most challenging level of the JLPT to master. It is so difficult to the point that even Japanese native speakers would struggle with the questions and often fail to get the 50 percent score needed to pass.

Similar to studying for the other JLPT levels, the test covers four parts: vocabulary (including kanji), grammar, reading and listening. Just memorizing words and kanji is not enough, as you will need to become fluent in grammar and pronunciation, as well as constantly practice your reading comprehension and listening skills. To pass the test, you will need to know about 10,000 Japanese words and 2,000 kanji.

As you go on your journey of mastering the N1, textbooks are not the only way to study for the JLPT. You should also listen to news reports on television as well as read Japanese books and newspapers to better enhance your Japanese.

But if you are looking for the more traditional way of studying using a textbook, check out our guide on the 10 best N1 JLPT textbooks.

If you are looking for a more comprehensive way how to study for the examination at your own time and pace, you can check out our study tips to pass the N1 JLPT.

While finding JLPT learning resources is great for self-learning, we also recommend finding the right support from a professional instructor. We offer online JLPT self-study courses for motivated individuals to help them pass the exam. By subscribing at 900 JPY a month (around 8 USD), you’ll get full access to all our JLPT self-study bundles.

1. 3000 Essential Vocabulary for the JLPT N1

1. 3000 Essential Vocabulary for the JLPT N1

This is one of the conducive JLPT N1. Besides being known for its small and compact size, which is easy to carry around, it has all the vocabulary that you would need to learn to ace the exam. It is the perfect resource for someone looking to prepare for the JLPT N1.

The book has been structured with 14 different chapters about topics on relationships, living, home, school and more. There are also links to their free-to-download audio files and practice tests which can be found on their website. Similar to the JLPT levels of the book, there is also a red sheet to block the Japanese word (for a quick mini-quiz) and a checkbox for you to tick.

Price: $17.59 (¥2,025 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

2. New Kanzen Master N1

2. New Kanzen Master N1

If you are looking to take the N1 level of the JLPT, New Kanzen Master is one of the most used resources to ace the examination. The book has 5 different versions, each with content on kanji, vocabulary, grammar, listening and reading. However, this means that you would have to purchase all 5 of the books in order to learn all test elements from this textbook and enhance your overall ability at the advanced level.

Each book has also been spilled into different parts, each focusing on a different aspect of the particular component of kanji, vocabulary, grammar, listening and reading. Once you have studied with this textbook, you can come out feeling confident and ready to ace the exam.

Price: $15.59 (¥1,794 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

3. Nihongo So-Matome N1

3. Nihongo So-Matome N1

Passing the N1 can be known as a battle that requires tons of patience, hard work, and commitment. If you think you are up for the challenge and are looking for a weapon to help you in this battle, the Nihongo So-Matome series is the perfect tool for you.

The contents in the book have been broken down into ‘daily digests’ making it simple and easy to study with. Similar to the books from the other JLPT levels, the book has been designed to finish within 6 weeks, with a practice test available at the end of every week. 

The book currently has 5 series:

  • Nihongo So-matome JLPT N1: Grammar
  • Nihongo So-matome JLPT N1: Kanji
  • Nihongo So-matome JLPT N1: Reading Comprehension
  • Nihongo So-matome JLPT N1: Vocabulary
  • Nihongo So-matome JLPT N1: Listening Comprehension (w/CD) 

Price: $15.60 (¥1,796 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

4. Try! Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

4. Try! Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

Different from other JLPT N1 textbooks, this book has been designed specifically for students to learn to practice their grammar. The Try! has been written as a fun and interactive book with intense drill practice to help you perfect your Japanese grammar. The book has over 10 chapters that will reinforce your knowledge through newspaper articles and heavy dialogues.

You can also head over to their official website for their free-to-download vocabulary list and audio files that can be used alongside the book.

Price: $23.60 (¥2,717 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

5. JLPT Preparation Book Speed Master – Quick Mastery of N1 Vocabulary (Advanced 2800)

5. JLPT Preparation Book Speed Master - Quick Mastery of N1 Vocabulary (Advanced 2800)

Aimed at advanced learners of the JLPT, this book will teach you 2,800 vocabulary for you to ace the examination. Readings of the words are shown in both kanji and hiragana and have translations in English and Chinese. There is also an included CD that allows you to study vocabulary wherever you go.

Price: $23.20 (¥2,670 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

6. The Best Practice Tests for the Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

6. The Best Practice Tests for the Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

Are you ready to face the challenge of the N1 examination? If you are ready and would like to practice on mock tests first, this is the book for you! Through 3 different mock-up tests, you will be able to try out practice tests that have been modified to present the actual exam and check your readiness before the big day. With English translations, it will be easy to check against the answers as well as get explanations for the questions which you are incorrect.

Price: $24.00 (¥2,753 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

7. Kikutan Japanese Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

7. Kikutan Japanese Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1

Looking to a compact-enough book to memorize Japanese vocabulary related to the N1? This book teaches you ways to master 1,232 words in just 2 minutes a day, but because it’s small, you can carry it around everywhere. You will learn 16 words every day for 11 weeks. The book also comes with an application that you can download to access the audio files for example sentences that have been recorded by native Japanese speakers

Price: $58.32 (¥2,420 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

8. Kanji Learner’s Course Graded Reading Sets, Vol. 9: Kanji 1901-2300

jlpt n1 book Kanji Learner's Course Graded Reading Sets, Vol. 9: Kanji 1901-2300

With over 5,347 exercises and 66,000 kanji, proper pronunciation guides, character-by-character Kanji learning as well as extensive grammar support, the Kanji Learner’s Course is one of the most comprehensive Japanese reading comprehension tools. You will gain knowledge on how to apply each kanji you learn to real-life situations, and continuously review what you have already studied.

There are also links in the book for you to access their website that has downloadable content as well. If you are using an Apple device, you will be able to look up any unfamiliar words in the built-in J-E dictionary.

Price (E-Book): $9.99 (¥1,146 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

9. Shin Nihongo 500 Mon – JLPT N1

Shin Nihongo 500 Mon - JLPT N1

Coming as a highly recommended book by many people, this compact and easy-to-carry book from the popular 500 questions series offers you bite-sized drills that you can complete within 20 minutes a day. Through a series of multiple-choice questions aimed at the N1 level of Japanese studying, the book has been designed to be used every day for 4 weeks, finishing 5 kanji, 5 vocabulary, and 5 grammar questions a day.

The book also contains detailed answers with explanations in English, Chinese, and Vietnamese and an appendix with lists of kanji, vocabulary, and grammatical structures to make learning more effective.

Price: $14.80 (¥1,698 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

10. JLPT N1 Official Practice Workbook

JLPT N1 Official Practice Workbook

If you want to practice before the actual examination, you can start doing mock tests through the official JLPT practice workbook. It is the perfect revision guide for those looking to review the topics and questions beforehand. The book has been divided into 3 parts. Part 1 is the shiken mondai which are the test questions. Part 2 contains the answer key with detailed explanations. Finally, Part 3 explains the test structure with updated information about the JLPT. 

Price: $14.00 (¥1,606 JPY)

Click on this link to purchase the book.

How many words and kanji do you need for JLPT N1?

 You will need to know around 2,000 kanji and 10,000 vocabulary words in total.

How long does N1 JLPT take?

It should take roughly 2,150 hours of JLPT study to pass.

How hard is JLPT N1?

The N1 is the most advanced level of the JLPT. This is because it requires thousands of hours of memorizing kanji, reading kanji, and listening to and reading Japanese. You will need full focus when studying for the N1. You won’t find regular, day-to-day situations in their reading section either. Instead, expect science-related and academic texts filled with advanced kanji and industry-specific vocabulary.

What is the passing score the JLPT N1?

The overall passing score of the N1 is 100/180 (55.55%). However, you will still need to pass each section of the test to pass. For example, if you score below 19 points for one section (like the reading comprehension), you’ll still fail JLPT — even if you score 120 in total.

Not sure about your Japanese level? Take our free Japanese language assessment test

If you are planning to take the JLPT 2022 and would like help in mastering the JLPT from professional instructors, we recommend signing up for our upcoming online and in-person 2022 JLPT Prep course (Tokyo and Yokohama).

Want to take the 2022 JLPT but are not sure about your level? Get in touch with us and find out how we can help you achieve your Japanese language target. If you’re unsure where you are, we provide a free Japanese level check. You can also contact us at [email protected] for any questions about course options and details.

Coto Japanese Academy is a unique Japanese Language School in Iidabashi Tokyo. We offer relaxed and fun conversational lessons for all levels of Japanese learners. If you are interested in our courses, please visit our contact page.


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