レンタルおにいちゃん - Week 13 Discussion (Absolute Beginners Book Club)

Just finished the volume, my first native Japanese material ever :partying_face:

I see that @kousei22 already asked most of the same questions I had, which were expertly answered by @2OC3aOdKgwSGlxfz and @ChristopherFritz, so a special thank you for all your splendid contributions to this book club, definitely would not have been able to complete it without you guys! :bowing_man: also cannot fail to mention my gratitude for @Micki for organizing it all, and to the other blessed souls that made this journey so lively and comforting – it was beyond perfect!

See you in the next one! :smiley: :wave:

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A few details will probably make you say, "Oooh, I see now!"

Makoto explains that when he heard about Kanami’s pain concerning her brother, and her loneliness, he couldn’t stand by and do nothing about it. That’s when he thought of the rental idea. He hoped the rental periods would help ease her emotional wounds. He wanted to become her strength. This leads to Kanami asking him his name.

Kanami thinks about all the things she wants to learn about Makoto-oniichan, about who he is. The wording for this is 「慎おにいちゃんのこと」. When referring to a person, こと sort of encompasses everything about a person, their essence. It’s the way the walk, the way they talk, how they interact with others, how they spend their time, why they do what they do. Wanting to know all about his こと means Kanami wants to know all about Makoto.

Then, in her mind, Kanami imagines her real brother asking, 「俺のことはどうでもいいの?」

(I’m entering grammar mode now.)

The prior topic was about Makoto’s こと, so this line shifts the topic to Kazutaka’s こと (「俺のことは」). Then, a comment is made on this new topic: 「どうでもいいの?」

Putting this comment into a Japanese-to-English dictionary gives you:

  1. [exp,adj-ix] inconsequential; indifferent; not worth worrying about; trivial
  2. [exp] whatever; whichever; I don’t care

It’s possible to break this expression down into the sum of its parts, but I’ve never tried, so I’ll take this translation as a whole.

Her brother’s imagined words in Kanami’s mind ask, “So you don’t care about my こと?” Essentially, it comes across as, “You want to get to know Makoto so much that you don’t care about me anymore?”

Notice that this isn’t her mean big brother making a spiteful comment. He’s smiling. It’s her kind big brother. If Kanami gives all her focus and attention to Makoto, does that mean she’s no longer thinking of getting her kind brother back?

Kanami realizes she can’t let that happen. 「だめだ」 She knows she pays money for the rental system to keep from seeing Makoto as her real brother. And if that happens, she’ll never get her real brother back.

Makoto suggests ending the rental system. Kanami can just call him normally.

Kanami says it’s all right, and she wants to continue the rental system. She thinks to herself that she needs to properly use the rental system, and stop her feelings (of wanting to get to know all about Makoto). She doesn’t want her thoughts of Makoto to go beyond those for her real brother.

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WOW a ton of that went over my head when I was reading. Also I somehow thought Makoto’s name was Asahi?? Idk how that happened. I’m gonna blame it on the fact it was midnight. Thanks for explaining!

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It is, actually!

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That’s his family name.

That’s why this is a book club =D

This is a very big part of the process when it comes to starting reading, and one I still encounter from time to time. That is, where you read something, and you think you have the gist of it, but parts feel “off”, like they’re just “not quite right”. Often that’s a cue that going back a page or two and carefully looking over the sentences and what’s going on in them may help clear things up. (Or asking in a book club!)

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Life got busy and I had to put this down for a couple of weeks, but I finally got caught up this weekend. Thank you very much, especially to those of you who took the time to post such clear and concise grammar breakdowns. This was my first Japanese book, and I learned a lot!

I’m all set with my 10 Minute Reader and am looking forward to joining you over there…

Thanks again!

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I finally finished! Adding my thanks to @Micki, @ChristopherFritz, @2OC3aOdKgwSGlxfz, and everyone who answered and asked questions. Much appreciated.

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Way late to the party but decided to pick this up via Amazon.jp.

Thanks for the recommendation.

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Welcome to the book club and welcome to WaniKani!

Check out this book’s home thread for links to all of the weekly threads. Lots of people still monitor these threads, so feel free to ask questions if you have any.

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Glad to see you’ve completed the first volume =D If you enjoyed it, volume 2 builds nicely on top of all the events in the first volume.

Welcome! As @davids68 says, you can ask any and all questions in the relevant weekly threads. They’re also great just to reading through to see what’s been discussed before.

I don’t know what your grammar background is, so I will warn that if you’ve not completed “N5” grammar, it may be very difficult to start reading. If that’s the case, don’t be discouraged! Learning basic grammar from a free resource (such as Tae Kim’s written guide, or Cure Dolly’s video lessons) can get you up to speed. One you have basic grammar down, then reading is a great way to develop recognition of it, and you’ll steadily improve over time.

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Thanks for the welcome, @davids68 - I’ll check out the thread and ask questions if they haven’t been addressed already.

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Thank you, @ChristopherFritz

My spoken Japanese is a lot better than my ability to read (hence Wanikani and the absolute beginner books). As long as I have furigana I can read it quite quickly. Finished vol 1 and 2 of the books last night. Quite easy and fun read.

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