Finally managed to finish the book thanks to winter vacation. Helps being in a ski cottage with not a lot of things to do (skiing of course but not the whole day) Read until week 4 I think with the bookclub but then had it on hold until last week. Finally I’ve read my first Japanese book! I felt this was quite a good level, although there sometimes was grammar that went over my head. Thanks for the discussions; they helped a lot! Not sure how I feel about the ending, the book got a lot heavier towards the end…
Gonna read キノの旅 next as I already have learned a lot of words for it, when I thought I was going to read it. Let’s see if I can participate in the next book-club book. I do have 氷菓 in my bookshelf, but I’d rather not play catch-up.
I ordered a paper copy of this book, and have a few questions:
Is there an existing vocab list out there? I looked into Koohi Cafe, but it is too much manual computering to get a list, and then it can’t be exported to Anki. Is there some nice person out there who has a list already?
Is there a way to get this legally in an eBook format in the US without falsifying address information or any shady stuff like that? Preferably a format that allows me to use the iOS Kindle app or another iOS reader with dictionary functionality.
I’m WK level 24 now, and grammar-wise, in the beginning of Tobira. Is this going to be drudgery to comprehend? I saw a few samples that didn’t look too bad, but that was only a few lines here and there.
Hey, welcome! Let me start by saying, this book is a very good choice as you can see in the most recent popularity poll:
(TL;DR it is the most popular book of the club and nobody disliked it)
For your questions:
In Intermediate book club we usually don’t do vocab sheets any more because each member’s knowledge is just too diverse. So I am afraid there might not be such a thing…
For Kindle, as far as I know you need a separate Amazon JP account and then you need to switch back and forth between that and your other account - does not sound pleasant to me but maybe there are workarounds. (Please can anybody add to this - I’m not a Kindle user…)
You can get the eBook from https://bookwalker.jp/ - it’s legal, no fiddling, and works quite well (at least for me). It has a reader app that you are required to use (no PDF download or somesuch) and which is quite nice, albeit a bit slow. It integrates with the iOS dictionaries, so you can enable whichever built-in dictionary you like to use and then look up words by holding your finger on them. Other people use BookLive and also say good things about their reader app, but I don’t know anything about it. (I think there was a poll some time regarding which service people use, and I think bookwalker was the most popular, but don’t let that hold you back if you prefer the other one. They always have free books so you can create an account with both, get a free book and try them out for a bit before you do a lock-in.) Also there are some threads with explanations and stuff (the website is not fully translated to English but there is a walk-through somewhere), so if you just search for the name, you will find more information.
Kanji: Once you use an ebook reader you can look up all kanji so that’s settled
Grammar: Of course native books can never be judged by JLPT levels, so you will always encounter even N1 grammar once in a while, but I think when I read Konbini ningen I was at about the same level grammar-wise or maybe a little bit further (but still below N3), and it was fairly doable. TBH in this book the most difficult part is the ramblings of one specific character which are just a bit hard to follow contents-wise, but other than that, I got along well with it.
Thank you! I’ve only read short works so far, so this is a jump up for me. I may have an opportunity to move to Japan next year, so I need to start challenging myself harder.
I just bought a copy on Bookwalker and installed the app. Works great, though the ios dictionary is a bit clunky. I guess I can cancel the paper copy for now. I looked into the Amazon option, but it requires to input a fake Japanese address, which seems like it could possibly lead to trouble down the road.
Well, they might only have licensed the right to distribute the eBook in Japan from the publishers, and there might be a different company who has paid for the right to distribute the eBook in the US. That’s in general why they need to check addresses.
But that’s splitting hairs most of the time. You can’t buy the product in your country (i.e. the book in Japanese), so you aren’t taking revenue away from a hypothetical distributor in this country, and you are still purchasing the product via legal channels that give the money to appropriate distributors, publishers, etc.
The Discord server is really only for when people are reading the book out loud together. This thread and the weekly discussion threads (linked to in the OP) are the places to go to discuss the book if you want to talk about it as you’re reading.
Hi! If you want to discuss the book post-bookclub I’m certain that you’ll get responses in the bookclub threads. I know I still watch them actively as do several other of the people who initially read along. The コンビニ人間 threads also have some really good discussion that could be interesting to read as you go.
Also, consider checking out the Sayaka Murata Bookclub! We’re actually starting a new pick in a few weeks if you want to read along!
You’re going to love コンビニ人間. Murata is really a fantastic author.
Thank you. I started reading the first few pages and I’m surprised of how much I can read !
I knew the book from the Akutagawa prize but I thought it was very hard to read (you know, Akutagawa prize…).
I know I need to get those last kanjis out and after that, I’ll just chill my way up to burning every turtle. I feel like slow and steady will make a good epitath for me since I’ve been here since 2013…