How to Say Something is Interesting in Russian Without Using интересный
As someone who is learning Russian, I definitely have fallen into a trap of saying интересный whenever any adjective is required. In an attempt to leave this habit in the past, I have found several ways to avoid the и word when speaking Russian.
1. Change the sentence structure
Instead of using the adjective, you can use the Russian verb интересовать(ся). For example, instead of saying интересная книга (interesting book) you could say:
Эта книга меня интересует (this book interests me)
In this case, книга becomes the subject of the sentence.
You could also say:
Я интересуюсь этой книгой (I’m interested in this book)
Here, the subject is я and the object (этой книгой) is in the instrumental case.
An adjective that can be used to replace интересный is занимательный. This should be used when you have positive feelings about the noun in question. It can be translated into English as entertaining or fascinating.
Любопытный can be translated into English more directly as curious, or strange, but can definitely be used to replace интересный in some circumstances. For example, this word should be used if you are intrigued by something or someone, making you want to find out more.
4. Привлекать/привлечь моё внимание
This verb can be translated as to attract, and can be used if something is interesting and thus has caught your attention. For example, instead of saying интересная книга (interesting book) you could say:
Эта книга привлекала моё внимание (This book caught my attention)
With a similar root to the above verb, this adjective can mean fascinating, or intriguing. It denotes a deep interest in something and a desire to learn more.
This adjective also shows that you are very interested in something, or it can also be used to describe a person in a highly complimentary way.
Удивительный is a great word to use when you would like to say interesting to talk about something that is both fascinating and surprising. For example, you might want to talk about the fascinating world of music, in which case you would say:
Удивительный мир музыки (the fascinating world of music)
I hope that this post has been удивительный, увлекательный and занимательный! Repetition is key to learning a language, so be sure to keep revising these words and phases, and try to use them when practicing Russian. If you would like some advice on how to memorise new words, check out this blog post.
Leila, currently studying at Liden & Denz St. Petersburg