三ツ星カラーズ — Week 15 Discussion (ABBC)

三ツ星カラーズ Week 15: Pages 125–141 + 143–145

We’ve reached the final chapter and bonus chapter!

Start Date: 19th of February

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Page Numbers Guide

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Thumbnails with page numbers for this week's reading. (Spoiler warning!)

Vocabulary List

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Page 129, it’s rather difficult to see on street view, but the entrance to the underground shopping mall is here. Here is a photo of it instead. Here is a photosphere of the actual underground, but with the camera positioning, it’s a little tricky to see anything much.

Page 137


This puzzle feels like exactly the sort of thing that might be in the Tokyo Metro Underground Mysteries, though I’ve never actually played that in Japanese, only English.

Page 140 really gives that ol’ “this could be the last chapter” feel. Was this originally intended to be a limited run?


Trying to hit the ground this running this week. I love where this chapter is going. Anytime おやじ shows up, I am down for it…

Anyhow, Page 128 Panel 2:

並んでる商品の真ん中にある物ってことじゃない. This is one of those instances where I know all the words, and the grammar doesn’t seem that complex, but I just cannot get exactly what ことは is saying here.
I think it is two parts: 並んでる商品の真ん中にある物 and ってことじゃない where the second part means “it doesn’t say” or something to that effect. The first part seems to be something along the lines of “a thing being in the middle of a line up of products”. Is she responding to the other two trying to figure out where the hint is pointing them? For some reason, I cannot get my head around this one.


I thought this was a fun chapter to finish with! I managed to figure this one out unlike the previous riddle Oyaji set…

On the last page I was a bit surprised that 汁 came out of the bomb! But obviously it means something like liquid not soup…

I’ve found this book has been quite a good discussion topic for my italki lessons, describing to my tutor in Japanese what happened in each chapter. I’m not sure about the spin off club, I have a pile of 20 unread books and manga in Japanese that I need to catch up on!

Page 128

In the panel before that one, they are discussing what the 真ん中の目 could refer to. Kotoha is then suggesting a possibility about what it could mean. My understanding is that こと refers to that possibility.

As you mentioned 並んでる商品の真ん中にある物 is “a thing that is in the middle of lined-up products.”
じゃない is being used in the “isn’t it?” sense here.

“Couldn’t it be that (the hint refers to) 「a thing that is in the middle of lined-up products」” ?

ってこと is very commonly used in this way to explain what something refers to. It’s an abbreviation of ということ, which can roughly be translated as “that is to say”.

" 「The eye in the middle of the shopping district」, isn’t that to say 「something in the middle of the lined-up products (of the shopping district)」"


Maybe it’s ginkgo nut soup. :slightly_smiling_face:

But yeah, the number one definition in goo.ne for 汁 is 物からしみ出させ、または絞りとった液体 - a liquid that oozes or has been squeezed from an object. So, some sort of sap or juice.


For goodness sake, another week, another reference to verb-ちゃ that I completely can’t remember. Going to look at last weeks thread.

edit: memory updated!
edit edit: apologies on behalf of future self for asking the same questions in the next bookclub. It will be

  • All those pesky noun endings: の、ん
  • All the quote related, I said, you, said: という, って
  • The ちゃ one above.



And just when you think you’ve got your head around ちゃ it will come up in its じゃ form (for verbs that conjugate into a te-form that ends in ~んで) and catch you out all over again!


Any verbs that conjugate to ~で. That includes ~ぐ verbs.


Whelp I’m done. Read through the rest in one go today. It was alright, but it’s definitely not my favorite. As someone who loves Yotsubato and Ichigo Mashimaro I expected to enjoy it more than I did. In this last chapter Sa-chan’s poop jokes were too much for me.

I think this series is harder than it’s made out to be too. There’s more unique vocab per chapter to learn than you’d think there’d be.


Just to make sure I am on the right page, we are talking about when the て-form is followed by は and it becomes ちゃ or じゃ?


The ちゃ ones still trip me up. However, for some reason, I find the じゃ version easier to spot in the wild. Perhaps because you see では shortened to じゃ pretty regularly with things like じゃまた or じゃない.


I’m done too.
Many thanks to @ChristopherFritz for running the book club.
Thanks for all the help and assistance from the 漫画先生たち

This will always be the first manga in Japanese that I finished (after two earlier attempts where I didn’t even get to the second page!).

I think this was a solid choice, I really like the artwork and the sillyness of the antics offset any frustration felt.

Looking forward to the next book club! I’ll see you in there!



That’s right, it’s this grammar point: Japanese ちゃ じゃ grammar cha ja - Learn Japanese online

N3 level grammar apparently but it’s going to be in any book you pick up with casual speech in.

This is one of the things that makes reading so hard. I’ve found this in pretty much every book I’ve picked up. It’s amazing how many words you know in your native language, and very difficult when you’re reading in another language. I feel like my vocab is gradually expanding with time. It is very rewarding when a word you’ve learned from a previous book comes up and you recognise it.

The other thing I would say is that with time you get to the point where you know enough to figure out the rest of the sentence from context, or at least get enough of the sentence to be able to carry on without having to stop to look up all the words.


What’s interesting is that the unique word count is fairly on par with other books and manga read in the ABBC, including Teasing-Master Tagaki-san which probably is a lot easier than Mitsuboshi Colors for first-time readers.

The good news is that if absolute beginner readers keep reading ABBC picks from here, it steadily gets easier and easier. A lot of the most common words in one book or manga will show up in others.

I use Grammarly’s free browser extension when posting on the WaniKani forums, as it helps catch minor issues so I’m not making so many edits after posting. They send weekly stat e-mails.

Grammarly says I used 2,792 unique words last week. It took me over two years just to (somewhat) learn (not quite) that many words in Japanese, and here I’m using over 2,500 unique English words in a week mostly just posting in book club threads and study logs.

Two areas where I find this the most noticeable:

  1. When I’m reading a long series, and go from struggling in the first volumes to reading with barely any stops in the last volumes. Examples of these for me are Yotsuba and Flying Witch.

  2. When I read a volume of a series, then put the series in hiatus for a year or two, then start reading the next volume. This past weekend I was away from home and the only manga I had to read was the untouched second volume of a series I read the first volume of over a year ago. I managed to read about 150 pages in a day whereas the first volume I was lucky if I managed 25 pages spread across a whole week.


I suppose it’s that even though the unique word count is similar, they’re just less commonly used vocabulary for new readers. I’ve blown through the first couple of volumes of Yotsubato because there were so many words I already knew from Genki and Wanikani.



I should know this by now, but since 全然 means both ‘completely’ and ‘not at all’, how can you tell which one it is in a particular context? Does it depend on whether it is paired with a negative or not, or is it completely contextual?


I wondered about it too. I think it needs to be paired with a negative verb to mean ‘not at all’, but according to Jisho it’s always rather negative in its nuance apart from colloquial uses (definition 3). This last one is the case here, I’d assume.


I’m done too! It was my first time reading anything, really (excluding short sentences in grammar lessons), and I’m quite happy I decided to start. I’ll probably try to make reading a part of my weekly study routine, I feel like it has helped a lot in reinforcing grammar points I studied or even just saw mentioned in the past.

Thanks ChristopherFritz for this ABBC round, and to everyone else that was asking and answering questions : )


That makes sense, thanks. I somehow missed the fine print in jisho mentioning the negative sentences.


Just did this week’s reading! Thank you to everyone for all of the support as I worked through my first manga. All of the grammar answers, encouragement, and shared understanding at the frustration was so helpful as I really I didn’t think I was ready for this. Now that it’s done I really do see how much faster I’m finding this and I just feel more comfortable with getting a sense of the context.

See you all for reading Happiness!