To help me understand accents I’ve started to read A Little Book Of Language, written by expert linguist David Crystal; which has been nicely illustrated by Jean-Manuel Duvivier. It’s such an easy read, and is written in a style much like Just My Type by Simon Garfield.
I’ve really begun to appreciate just how hard our tongue works when pronouncing words. The whole process is extremely complicated, and yet we take it all for granted when speaking in our mother-tongue. However, when put in the awkward situation of speaking a foreign language, we’re forced to become conscious of the movements of our tongue and lips.