ルリドラゴン ・ Ruri Dragon 🐲 (Absolute Beginner Book Club)

This is how i buy my manga. We have a Mitsuwa with a Kinokuniya in it nearby to save on shipping


I didn’t know this stuff was possible. I bought my copy on CDjapan. I could only justify shipping cost because I bought it with a bunch of other items.


Kinokuniya and Book Off are excellent options if you have access to one of them. Book off is used books and is only in California(7 locations), New York(2), and Hawaii(2) in the US, Seoul, Paris, and Malaysia and doesn’t have online ordering vs Kinokuniya which is in 12 counties, has an online store and is new books making it easier to find what you want.


Super excited to finally join the ABBC for a book/manga. This will be my first foray into reading pretty much anything other than Twitter sometimes but after “reading” (stumbling through) the first 15 or so pages I’m really excited to start reading. I’m looking forward to reading with everyone!


Hey guys! So, this will by my first time actually committing to a book club :sweat_smile: My previous 3 attempts at the ABBC have been:

Purchase the book → Try reading the first few pages → Immediately get overwhelmed → Stop and tell myself that it’s pointless until I’m ‘good at japanese’ :joy:

So what makes it different this time? First of all, though I’m still very much at an N5 reading level and will be for some time, I’ve gotten used to reading the example sentences through BunPro that it’s given me the confidence to take my time and slowly go through things. I think another factor was that with Hunter x Hunter, the physical manga was so small that the text was practically impossible for me to read with it being my first jp manga. Most of all, my study plan has changed. My current goal is to put all my time WaniKani, as that’s what’s motivating me right now, so having a structured book club to keep my immersion/reading skills up would be ideal. So, I’m excited to start this with all of you. Though I will absolutely be using the digital edition of ルリドラゴン , does anyone know of how to look for large editions of jp manga out there, out of curiosity? Again, excited to begin this with y’all, finally!


Also, to make a suggestion: I’ve noticed with previous books in the ABBC series that the responses to the threads get significantly fewer after the first 3 weeks, with usually only about 3 - 5 people responding regularly after that point. IMHO, I think a reason behind this is the pacing. I understand that the language is already quite simple and there’s not a huge amount of text on the page, but it is nonetheless very time consuming just to try and get through 13 - 15 pages for a beginner every single week. For this series, I think it’d be worth considering having a 10 pages max reading limit, regardless of the amount of text that there’ll be within those pages. I know the pace is already slow enough as it is, but I think it would encourage more readers. I would personally be far more motivated to participate if we tried a smaller number of pages to read per week in comparison to the previous books.

I’m not being naïve as to why the practice of 13 - 15 pages per week has been the dynamic up until now, but could we please try lowering it for this book? Already having skimmed through the first 10 pages ルリドラゴン, I personally consider it to be a lot to handle. I really think an 8 - 10 page limit would be appropriate. Especially considering that this is an ‘absolute beginners’ club after all.


While I think you have a point, I think we can also consider it part of the statistical failure of goal setting. 1 week in, most people have still kept their goal, but a month and later it falls off steeply. For things like New Year’s resolutions, only something like 8% of people have kept theirs by the end of the year.


I agree with you, but in comparison to a ‘majority of people dropping out after an entire year’, here we have a majority of people dropping out after just a handful of weeks. As someone who used to run a film club before, I know how these things work. No club experiences a majority of attendees sticking out to the very end, but as someone who’s genuinely motivated to do, I feel as though the process needs to be made a lot more approachable.


Sundried conducted a survey with a reach of 4,000 people and found that 43% of people expect to give up their goal after just one month .

I used to run an in person anime club too, but unless your film club was actively watching films outside of the club meetings or other active actions, I don’t see how that’s very relevant. Given that most people treat the reading itself as a goal rather than a social club, I don’t think the drop in participation should be that surprising.


I guess the question would be if there was a significantly more engagement in the Mitsuboshi Colors club as opposed to others since it seems that club had the majority of the schedule be 6-7 pages per week. If the same trend of most people dropping off a few weeks in still seems to be the case then reducing the page count/ week probably isn’t the solution.


I think highlighting that the schedule is optional and that reading at your own pace is totally fine and that people will still respond to questions on previous weeks’ threads could help newer readers feel less intimidated to read slower? I know people have said these things before, but if it’s someone’s first bookclub then maybe they haven’t seen other post mentioning it?


Those are valid points from both of you. Suffice it to say, even if the page count isn’t as big of a factor for drop-outs as I’m speculating, it’s nonetheless something that I’d appreciate OP consdering for my aforementioned reasons.


The number of people reading through always follows the same trend. It starts off with some number of people, then halves by the second week, goes down further on the 3rd week, and reaches a pretty stable number on the 4th week, about a fifth or sixth of the original. This is regardless of the amount of text. Check out ハピネス, in my opinion the abbc club with the least amount of text a week, even there the pattern holds, from 300 or so to a regular 60.
You also got to remember, that some people drop the book out of disinterest. If we reduce the number of pages a week to 10, that means 18 weeks of reading this, or about 4.5 months. If someone doesn’t want to read this book or just so happens to come to the forums in the middle, they will have to wait an excruciatingly long time until the next one starts


I agree. Logistically speaking reducing the pages to where the bookclubs are in the 4 month range is really not a viable option unless we completely shift how the club is done and have some sort of staggering, but even that wouldn’t be a good solution since many absolute beginners would end up missing out on books due to not being able to balance multiple clubs at once. I think highlighting that reading at a slower pace is perfectly acceptable and that the threads remain open and active is about all that can be done.


Realistically speaking as a complete beginner, you should be reading every single day. It will be very hard and you’ll hate every second, but even if there are 20 pages a week, that amounts to 3 per day. Its not as bad as it sounds at first
Also, the schedule usually starts off slower and increases gradually for this exact reason.


Hey, welcome to the club! I hope that this time will be the charm, and you’ll finish this with us! :dragon_face:

Apart from the things that have already been said, I’d like to highlight that HxH and Cells at Work were significantly harder than the usual picks in this club.

Natively is a website that tracks book difficulty for learners, and while our usual picks are always in the L14-22 range (Ruri Dragon is L20), Hunter x Hunter and Cells at Work! are L27 and and L28 respectively. (If we go by the Natively level alone, that’s even harder than the usual Beginner Club L24-L25…)

So if HxH is your point of comparison, you can expect Ruri Dragon to be significantly more approachable.


Regarding the pacing:

On one hand, I can see the book club fully adjusting to the participants, and I don’t want to leave people behind. I don’t think setting a fixed limit like “10 pages per week, maximum, we’ll never go above this the whole time” is a good idea, but regularly checking in with the participants via polls and adjusting from there would be how I would go about it.

On the other hand, @Gorbit99 has excellent points here too - this is still part of a bigger book club, and people might be waiting for the next book, so going much slower might not be healthy either.

I’d be interested in @ChristopherFritz’s thoughts about it - I remember him saying that Mitsuboshi Colors ran longer to accomodate for readers that were just starting out. Luckily I can already see him typing. :slight_smile:

(And I think another thing to consider is that being too slow might also make it harder for people to stick with the club until the end. Although that’s probably a more minor factor, all things considered.)


That’s the trap that’s easy to fall into. By reading along with the book club, reading the discussion threads, and asking questions, you have the opportunity to learn a lot along the way!

The book clubs tend to start at a slower pace to ease readers in, then pick up the pace a few weeks in. With Mitsuboshi Colors, when we reached that pace increase, there was a request to keep to the slower pace for a bit longer.

This got me pondering on ways to handle absolute beginners who need a slower pace and those who don’t, but I was never able to think of a viable solution. The best I can think of is to let participants know that it’s okay to go on a slower schedule than the book club is going. Of course, at that point, you lose the factor of reading with the club.

I think one important factor is for readers to become comfortable with getting the gist of what’s being said and going on in the material. This allows keeping pace better, and they can always re-read the material later on when they know more grammar and vocabulary. But you also don’t want to go too far in the “gist of” direction that you’re not learning every day.

The main issue here is that when the first pick’s schedule is worked out, this is used to determine when the second pick (if there is one) starts.

However, if it were decided up front that the first pick would poll mid-club for when to pick up the pace, the second pick’s organizer can hold off on solidifying the start date.

That, and some people might decide to just finish at a faster pace if they’re able to and find the pace is too slow. (But one can argue that there are no issues with this outcome.)

I don’t have any answers, but whatever is decided for pacing for this club, I’ll go with the flow on scheduling for the second pick that starts after this one.


Thank you guys for the responses, I appreciate you taking the time to communicate your points. I think what I’m going to for this book is just try to get ~5 pages done per week and respond to those pages whenever I can, and in general do what I can each week. My approach thus far has been:

● Read/sound out each sentence
● Try to breakdown the meaning
● Re-write the sentence into ichi.moe and look at the breakdown

It’s a slow process, but it’s engaging, and it introduces me to new grammar points in the wild. I’d rather do things this way, not moving on from a sentence until I’ve done everything I can to comprehend it. So, given how busy I am each week, there may be weeks where I might not be able to participate at all, but I’m just going to do what I can.

I think the points you’ve made regarding maintaining the pacing are fair, and I agree with them. However, I didn’t know until today that we’re allowed to ask questions on chapters/weeks from the past. That’s a big relief. Do these just go in their allocated week thread? It’d be nice to know that if I finish week 2 and y’all are as far a week 7, that I can still ask questions in the week 2 thread and get a response. Likewise, if I’m only able to read the first 3 pages of the given week, if I’m still allowed to participate. Thanks!


Yep, you just post them in the thread from the week they belong to, and somebody who has the thread set to watching will answer it fairly quickly. :grin:

And this is definitely a yes, as well. In the Takagi-san thread, people joined us while we were in Volume 8 and they were playing catch-up from the first or second volume, and they are/were incredibly active members of the club. Asking questions is a good thing not only for you but for the people answering the questions too. I know I certainly got a brain workout and learned some things while answering @mariodesu’s questions in Takagi-san! :grin: