氷菓: Week 13 Discussion

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Week 13

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Start Date: Apr 4th
Last Week: Week 12
Next Week: Week 14

Reading:

End Page End % End Phrase Page Count
175 81% [End of chapter] 10

Discussion Rules

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, please mention the chapter and page number. Also mention what version of the book you are reading.
  • Don’t be afraid of asking questions, even if they seem embarrassing at first. All of us are here to learn.
  • To you lurkers out there: Join the conversation, it’s fun! :durtle:

Participants

Mark your participation status by voting in this poll.

  • I’m reading along
  • I have finished this part
  • I’m still reading the book but I haven’t reached this part yet
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  • I’m skipping this book

0 voters

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Since I feel bad for not commenting more often, I’ll say a thing or two this time

It was a pretty nice chapter overall. The cuts were a bit in weird places (sorry about that, I couldn’t guess) but overall followed the pace of the chapter…
And it feels awfully convenient that all their findings just kept building on top of each other, exactly in the order they were presenting :stuck_out_tongue:.
Still fun, though.

If I have to hazard a guess which pretty much goes with the last line of the chapter, I think that the thing the uncle told 千反田 was about why the book was named 氷菓 rather than about the events that led to him leaving the school. It makes more sense, too; I can picture kid 千反田 about “what does this mean?” while pointing at the book rather than asking about the events that happened years before. And I guess we’ll learn more on that in the next chapter :stuck_out_tongue:

For the “or two” of my “thing or two”, I’d like to note the 「帰りも里志に案内してもらわねばならないのは残念だ。」Oh? You would have liked to spend a bit more time with 千反田? Interesting. Not so grey anymore, are we :smirk:

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It’s more that they were making a point of building on the previous person’s work.

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Right, but that’s only possible because, well, their findings all have complementary info. And I don’t think you would be able to have such a nice flow to the explanation if you changed the order in which they talked. That’s the most obvious for ホータロー (forgot his kanji, damn you 里志), but even if you just flip the turn of 里志 and 摩耶花(? Why am I so bad with names), 里志 would only be able to say “well, a thing happened, I have no idea if it’s relevant. Why I brought this you ask? The answer is shrug”.

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This whole chapter was pretty hard for me so it made it a bit difficult to enjoy it since I was looking up so many things and trying to make sense of everything.

I guess it will be nice to go back to this in the (far) future in order to see if it gets any better.

Appart from that, I liked the thought process and how they built up on/contradicted each other. Wondering how open (or not) the ending will be.

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I still feel that the whole thing is a red herring.

By the way, can you post an example of sentence you had trouble with? If you don’t mind…

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What? A red herring? This cannot be!

When has Oreki ever been wrong? :stuck_out_tongue:

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Most of the time it is a matter of having to look up so many things in a row that I end up losing the thread of the sentence and get overwhelmed. In this chapter in particular there were also times when I wasn’t sure who was talking since there were several dialogues in a row, which added to the confusion.
Here’s an example of a paragraph I had a lot of trouble with (I think it’s actually from last week?):

Summary

俺もそう思う。なんというか、五里霧中で霧は晴れないが地図だけは見つけたような、隔靴搔痒だが痒いのは足だとわかったような。『氷菓』と『団結と祝砲』の二資料だけから考えられるのは、実際伊原の説程度が限界ではなかろうか。あとは、里志の資料と俺のとで細部を詰めていけばいいし、そこで致命的矛盾が生じるようならそこでまた考え直せばいい。

There’s the strings of kanji in the second sentence, which are a pain to look up but I thought I was understanding until I got to the 足 part and then I got completely lost (I’m guessing it’s an expression or something?). Not sure about the second one, maybe whether what 伊原 said is the limit of what can be extracted from those materials? The last one is the only one I think I ended up understanding, but it still took me a while because of the way it is written (in an unnecessarily complicated way in my opinion, but of course I probably wouldn’t think twice about it if I wasn’t reading it in a language I haven’t mastered). And I would add that since there is so much vocab that is unfamiliar to me, when there are several in a row it is difficult to see which meaning or nuance of it is supposed to be the correct one. Sometimes when I finally manage to decipher a sentence it seems trivial in rereading, but it really isn’t the first time around.

Anyway that was kind of long and I’m not sure if it clarified anything really :sweat_smile:

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I read the last three weeks’ worth yesterday and am caught up! And now that I changed my vote in the poll, people ‘reading along’ are finally in the lead. :grinning:

I followed the general flow of everything going on in this chapter, but there were some paragraphs I had to reread to get, and there were a couple points where I felt like I wasn’t completely getting something and then realized I didn’t care enough to figure it out. I mean, I got the gist even at those points but it is a measure of me not being overly invested in this book. But I’m liking it okay, and it’s not so far from being over anyway!

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Worse, those are puns :sweat_smile:
Both 四字熟語 (groups of four kanji) are expressions meaning “to be lost” or “to not understand”, but he is also using at the face value of their kanji (a five ri fog and scratching one’s foot through the shoe). The point is that they haven’t cleared up everything but they have made noticeable progress.

The second part is exactly what you think.

んー 分かるような分からないような、やっぱり分からないな。:see_no_evil:
I do remember the feeling of having to look up everything and getting lost in the process. It looks like you understood the important parts, though!
Also I don’t understand exactly why this book seems to be more difficult than, say Kino no tabi :thinking: Or did people complain too and I just don’t remember? :woman_shrugging:

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I can’t speak for anyone else but to me it feels like the hard sections are harder than Kino even if the overall difficulty isn’t too much higher (although it has been a while since we read Kino and I’d like to think I’ve improved a bit since then so it’s hard to judge).

Using the sentence @Sylph posted above as an example, those are two 四字熟語 in the same sentence, both of which I haven’t seen before. I did understand the general meaning after looking them up but the wordplay went over my head.

The last two weeks were also full of lists that were quite dense and took extra time to process compared to dialogue/prose. So while they might not have been difficult on their own, they took longer to read and then consider how they might fit into the plot.

That’s pretty much how I feel about the difficulty of the book in general so far. I often find myself having to look up words and phrases and reread parts to make sense of things. It’s hard to say how much of that is due to unfamiliar vocab or a different writing style than I’m used to and how much is the content itself. It is a mystery after all and is supposed to require a bit more thought to piece things together.

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Oh! That makes complete sense (to me at least)!
I just want to clarify that I’m not asking those questions out of morbid curiosity or anything, I just want to get data to inform the next book pick of the club. This club died once already, I’d rather not have that happen again.

So, from what you said, it sounds to me like the nature of the book means that understanding the details and nuance of sentences much more important, while at same time providing less redundancy that usual. Or even worse, putting discrepancies on purpose, as those are supposed to be hints, but can throw learners for a loop, as we rely on context clues to understand what we are reading. And then there’s indeed the information dumps and other red herrings happening once in a while, which do not help either.

Do you all think that’s fair to say? If so, I guess we should be extra careful next time we pick a mystery book.

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I agree with everything you said. I do like the challenge but maybe mysteries aren’t the best fit for the club.

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just gonna slide out of my lurky hole real quick

I have the first お嬢様探偵ありす book because it was one of the early additions to FloFlo, and talked to Raionus about it a bit in the past (haven’t read it yet). He said it was more difficult than its word count made it appear, because it was a mystery book - and thus understanding the grammar precisely is important to follow the plot, there are big expositional reveals, counter-arguments are being made all over the place…

It just sounds very similar to what you’re describing here, so thought I’d mention it in support of the idea that perhaps mystery books are usually just a little harder than their equivalents for various reasons.

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