薬屋のひとりごと(Advanced Book Club)

I haven’t been participating in the threads at all either, even though there were lots of part I wasn’t fully clear on and could’ve asked about. At the beginning I was a bit overwhelmed by the number of messages (not used to this much activity here in the ABC), then I was late on the reading for a while ^^’ But I’m caught up now! I’ve been mostly enjoying the book although there’s a lot of vocab, and I wish there was more of an overarching story.

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Yeah I have to look up a bunch. To be honest the way I’m reading this is not really great for learning but I tend to do that a lot when I’m really interested in a book/manga.

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My own posting about ambiguous grammar and stuff has slowed down for myself as well; partly a combination of getting used to the author’s style, partly just getting the point of saying, “screw it, I understand this well enough”, haha. I want to focus more on chatting about the story, see what other people think of it.

Gotcha, gotcha. I figure, even if you’re not doing intensive reading, the sheer flood of info you’re consuming is going to help regardless, right?

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How has the book been so far? Have the later chapters been about the same as the earlier ones in terms of story quality, writing quality, etc.?

I haven’t read the book in over a month (up to chapter 9). If I started reading again now I could probably catch up within a week or two, though in that case I’d just be reading to get through it rather than trying to learn and ask questions. I’d probably be better off reading 本好き for fun for a bit and coming back to this sometime later this year after the book club is done. Of course, I could try to read both at the same time, but the chances of me reading any other book once I’ve started a volume of 本好き is pretty low. :sweat_smile:

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I’m probably not the most relevant person to say so, but I really like the development around the time of the night party (so, the part we just read, and what comes next.
I can’t really comment on the writing quality. I only noticed problems when I was re-reading. :sweat_smile:

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There’s a lot between chapter 9 and what you just read though, so that’s not encouraging… But yeah since you’ve read it (and future books) already it’ll help to hear from someone else too.

Then the question is, have you noticed as many problems in recent chapters compared to the first few? Though to be fair, I think a lot of the mistakes that were caught were due to the large amount of comments and questions. So if there hasn’t been much discussion lately, you still may not have caught them.

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I think that’s the case. I have no problem understanding what is being said, so I don’t really notice issues, I guess. There was a discussion about the use of English words as furigana and how annoying it is, and I said that it stops in later volumes… but upon checking, it turns out I was wrong.
The most egregious problem is in volume 4 or 5. It literally started a small twitter war between people saying it’s incorrect and should read [something else] while the others said it’s valid and has the meaning of [I don’t remember]. Since those opinions lead to a different interpretation of that part, it’s not even an abstract discussion. I personally went with “the author knows what they are doing”, that is, the second option. The author did not comment on the issue, by the way.

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Haha wow. It definitely seems like ignorance was bliss in this case and you’re worse off for us having brought up the weird furigana and likely errors. :laughing:

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For what it’s worth, I’m currently on chapter 20 and I’ve been having fun pretty much the whole time, as far as I can remember. There were a few parts that were confusing to me simply because I misread stuff or didn’t look up / check in the dictionary properly. Can be a bit tiring when there are so many unknown words, but shouganai. I’m still enjoying the story so far and I like the characters.

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I’m on chapter 21 (I think) now, and I’ve been enjoying the book the whole way through so far.
…Granted, I’m biased due to having read the manga version of this volume first, so I walked in knowing I’d enjoy it.

Having not read any content past this volume, volume 1 definitely feels like an introduction to the world for the reader. There’s been some comments that people aren’t as fond of the lack of overarching plot so far, but I feel like it helps to ease the reader into the society and how things work there.

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The antepenultimate week is upon us. Rejoice in fear. Drink some salty sake.

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Next week is the long week as well. :eyes:

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Welcome to the long week™

I’m posting a bit late because I thought I’d reorganize the name list before posting, then I got lazy, then thought “okay next time”, but it was half way done, so at least I wanted to clean that up then I got lazy again. aaaaa
Anyway.

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Last week! And some shipping! (At least I did at the time)

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You’re not alone :eyes:

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@Naphthalene if I have questions about later volumes would you mind me posting them in here?

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Sure! (with the proper spoiler warnings)

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This ended up being more than I expected :weary:

Volume 5 Spoilers

Chapter 7

「つまりあれか? その仙女ってのは、不老不死の薬をねたに客を集めてるってわけか?」

Context: They are talking about the Albino magician girl
Question: I have no clue what the をねたに is doing here. I’m guessing the sentence means something along the line of “[…] is gathering cutomers for her immortality elixir”?

Chapter 8

向こうは大家だ。猫猫がやり手婆に敵わないように、大きく出られないだろう。

Context: They are currently at the mediation between the やぶ家族 and the 大家 that wants to evict them
Question: Is he thinking about her own value and how much she would be worth if she were to sell herself?

Chapter 11

盗賊の件は、なにかと誤算だったようだ。馬借が震えて小さくなっている。商人と言い張るにはどう考えてもおかしい集団だったので、金持ちの坊が地方役人に飛ばされたという設定でやっていたが、けっこうなお偉いさまだと気付いたらしい。

Context: This is after they were attacked by thieves
Questions

  • 盗賊の件は、なにかと誤算だったようだ。- Is this part talking about the thieves making a miscalculation?
  • 商人と言い張るにはどう考えてもおかしい集団だったので、金持ちの坊が地方役人に飛ばされたという設定でやっていたが、けっこうなお偉いさまだと気付いたらしい。- Does this paraphrased mean that the cover of them being merchants would not hold and they switched their cover to a rich monk that was expelled from his lands?

Chapter 12

今ある結婚話をなんとかしてものにするくらいのしたたかさを持ってほしい。

Context: 猫猫 is talking to 里樹妃 about her family history and possibly being the emperors child
Question: The grammar in the middle part ものにするくらいの is just indecipherable to me

Chapter 13

「元々、異国の神を祀っていたものを移築したもので、それが気にならなければ。もちろん、異教徒などこちらには通っていませんから」

Context: 猫猫, 里樹 & 阿多 are getting escorted into a room where they can eat as a group
Question: The first sentence just asks if they are okay to eat here even though this is/was a place of worship for a foreign god, right? The second sentence has a few more question marks for me. Is he saying that obviously no ppl worshiping this god (from his point heretics) come to this place anymore?

「いえ、他人の心配をするより、私が行き遅れなもので」

Context: She is talking with 馬閃 about the possible marriage between 壬氏 and 里樹
Question: Is she saying that she is more worried about she herself getting married late instead of other peoples problems? (That seems very unlike her)

Chapter 14 (I had a lot of trouble with this chapter)

その壬氏と馬閃だが、今日は昼に会合があるらしい。こちらは政に関係する会食が主で実に腹の探り合いが面倒そうだ。

Context: They are at the palace (?) of the western country and 猫猫 is talking about the plans for the day
Question: In this case the こちら is giving me trouble. Is the second sentence still talking about 壬氏 & 馬閃 or her own plans?

そんな才能を見抜けるのは本当に人とは思えないあの変人片眼鏡である。

Context: 猫猫 is talking to 陸孫 about his talent to remember peoples faces incredibly well
Question: Is the 本当に人とは思えない saying that he does not seem like a real person?

「私に見えるものを根拠にしたところで、たぶん誰も納得しないだろう?」

Context: 猫猫 is asking 陸孫 if he can use his talent to see if two people are related
Question: The 私に見えるもの is “How it seems to him”?

「どうせおまえはためしに産んでみたいだけで、子どもには興味なかろう。皇弟の子なら、僕がちゃんと養育するし、おまえは好きなようにやればいい。別に正妻になれというわけではなく、何度か間違いがあればそれでいいのだ。こちらとしても跡取りができて万々歳だ」

Context: 羅半 talks about 猫猫 having a baby from 壬氏
Question: Ok so this came so out of left field that I just want to confirm I did not dream this. He is asking her to have 壬氏’s baby. She should just look at it from the perspective of it being a experiemnt? And he will bring up the child and she does not even have to marry him? What is the 何度か間違い about though?

「誰と誰を見ろというんだ?」

Context: 猫猫 & 羅半 are talking about 卯柳
Question: I think the whole sequence is them “talking” about the case that 卯柳 might not be 里樹’s father. This sentence does not make any sense to me

合席が珍しいのであって本来、女はもっと影に隠れているのが常識だ。

Context: Still at the banquet
Question: What does the あって本来 mean?

Volume 5 answers

ネタにする means to use something as the content of a conversation. For instance, a comedy sketch will be about X, so it will Xをネタにする. Here, she is using her immortality elixir as [bait] (not the right word, but I can’t English right now) to gather customers.

Not in that sentence. Just saying that, the same way she can’t go against the やり手婆, they/she can’t push too hard against the 大家.

Well, you would say both sides made a miscalculation. But based on the next two sentences, it’s more like their group made a miscalculation (with their cover).

Almost, but that’s a son of a rich family, not a monk. Rather than expelled, just sent off (as in, he is not banned from coming back to visit).

ものにする means in this context “to win over”, in this case, the 結婚話 (so, make it happen), なんとかして (one way or another). Then comes くらい over all that (“such thing”). So 猫猫 wants that person to have the willpower to do something of the level of [everything before].

Yes

Yes.

Yes and it is. She is being sarcastic (I just checked the context). She then gets annoyed internally when he takes that remark at face value.

こちら is “around this parts” (political lunch meeting are the main thing, which is annoying; I don’t know if it’s intended as a pun, but it does give another dimension to “searching each other’s guts” :stuck_out_tongue:)

That her (biological) father is supernaturally good (at finding people with exceptional talents like 陸孫), yes.

Kinda? The things he can see (but others can’t).

Yes.

No. “Anyway, you’d probably just care about experiencing giving birth, you don’t care about kids, right?”

Those are two different he :joy: He (her half brother) will take care of the child and she don’t have to marry 壬氏.

Well, you see, when a bee and a flower like each other very much, err, and they aren’t married, well, they make mistakes, sometimes. And he is all for it. As many times as needed for a baby to happen.

That person is asking who are the two persons that need to be compared.

Just to be sure I just kept checking for a solid 10 minutes, but I don’t think it’s anything else than であって (so である in て form) and the next clause starting with 本来. Like, it does stands on its own if you remove everything up to であって. I would have put the 、after the て though.

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Thank you so much for your help! It clears up all of my problems!

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