霧のむこうのふしぎな町 ・ The Mysterious Town Beyond the Mist (Beginner Book Club)

Welcome to 霧のむこうのふしぎな町

We’re reading this as the Beginner Book Club!

If you want to take part… just buy the book and join in the discussion when we start on the 14th of December! There’s a membership poll further down.

Not sure if this book is for you? Check out the sample pages in the Nomination Post - remember that your fellow book club members will be here to help you out though :wink:


Buy the Book

Physical | CDJapan | Amazon JP

eBook | BookWalker | eBook Japan | Kindle | BookLive | Honto

If you haven’t used Amazon JP before, note that you will need a separate account.
CDJapan has (slow) economy shipping options available so is usually cheaper.


Click here to find out about and vote on a read-aloud group for this book!

Discussion Threads

Coming 14th December!

Reading Schedule

Week Start Date Chapter Page Numbers Page Count
Week 1 December 14th 1 ・ リナ、霧の谷へ 7 - 11 4
Week 2 December 21st 1 ・ リナ、霧の谷へ 12 - 18+ 7
Week 3 December 28th 1 ・ リナ、霧の谷へ 19 - 28 9
Week 4 January 4th 2 ・ ピコット屋敷という下宿 29 - 41 12
Week 5 January 11th 2 ・ ピコット屋敷という下宿 42 - 55 11.5
Week 6 January 18th 3 ・ リナ、はじめましてはたらきにでる 57 - 69+ 12
Week 7 January 25th 3 ・ リナ、はじめましてはたらきにでる 70 - 82 11.5
Week 8 February 1st 4 ・ バカメとトーマスのいる店 83 - 96 12
Week 9 February 8th 4 ・ バカメとトーマスのいる店 97 - 110 13
Week 10 February 15th 5 ・ 魔法の手助け 111 - 124 11
Week 11 February 22nd 5 ・ 魔法の手助け 125 - 136 10
Week 12 February 29th 6 ・ 王子さまというものは 137 - 154 15.5
Week 13 March 7th 7 ・ お面をとらない男の子 155 - 165+ 10
Week 14 March 14th 7 ・ お面をとらない男の子 166 - 178 11
Week 15 March 21st 8 ・ おみやげ 179 - 190 11
Week 16 March 28th 8 ・ おみやげ 192 - 203 10.5

+The last line runs onto the next page

Vocabulary List

Coming 14th December


Members

Are you planning to read 霧のむこうのふしぎな町 with us?

  • Yes
  • Yes, but I might start late
  • No

0 voters

If you’ve read it before but will join in the discussion, please select ‘yes’!


7 Likes

I guess it’s time to put this home thread up!

Schedule

Chapter six is very short (~15 pages, where the others are all 22 - 25). If we read it in one week it will be a few pages longer than our otherwise longest week, but splitting it will result in two very short weeks and take us to a total of 17 weeks.

How long do you think we should spend on the sixth chapter?

  • One week
  • Two weeks

0 voters

Version

If you’re joining us for this book, which version are you planning to read?

  • Physical
  • eBook

0 voters

3 Likes

@Radish8 friendly reminder about the vocab sheet.


I have the book right now. I haven’t checked thoroughly yet on how long I should spend on the sixth chapter though. :stuck_out_tongue: That’s why I haven’t voted yet.

Welp, I clean forgot to buy this one when I was in Japan, sooo… I guess maybe I’ll pass.

Also, didn’t we read this one, like… a long time ago? Before I started reading regularly?

No, we’ve just been talking about it forever.


@Radish8 I will be participating, but I’ve been challenging myself to read more quickly, and I will do so here as well. I’m probably going to try to read it in 4-6 weeks.

2 Likes

That will make you excellently placed to help the rest of us :wink:

4 Likes

That’s the plan!

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I’ve never read a Japanese book before, so I was wondering whether the ‘page numbers’ mentioned in the first post are for the normal version or the bunko version?

1 Like

It should be based on the version linked to and pictured in the OP.

I see the book in the screenshot in the first post says 「青い鳥文庫」 at the very top, whereas the (Japanese) listing of the e-book on Kobo says it in English:

Kobo lists the e-book as being 50 pages, but when I loaded onto my Kobo Aura H2O device, and with the default settings, it comes up as 199 pages with fairly big lettering.

This will be the first book club read that I am participating in!

I just bought the book on bookwalker and I hope that it will be a pleasant enough read. :slight_smile:

8 Likes

With about a month until we start reading, I thought I’d post some stats I’ve compiled on the upcoming book. (The tools I wrote for this are unsophisticated, so some numbers will not be exact.)

Vocabulary

There are under 580 unique words, and under 2,130 words total. Edit: It looks like there may have been an issue with my process to generate the word count numbers. For the most part, everything else here hopefully is right!

Roughly 150 unique words use kanji. About 320 of the total words use kanji. (That means a whole lot of hiragana-only words!)

List of five most common words.
  • リナ (45 times) (I’m guessing the main character’s name?)
  • 人 (30 times)
  • おまわりさん (19 times)
  • から (14 times)
  • 町 (14 times)

Kanji

There are 525 unique kanji in the story. However, in total, there are 4,932 individual kanji.

List of the 17 most common kanji.
  • 人 (222 times)
  • 見 (184 times)
  • 思 (160 times)
  • 本 (104 times)
  • 一 (94 times)
  • 店 (84 times)
  • 大 (78 times)
  • 食 (70 times)
  • 気 (69 times)
  • 子 (62 times)
  • 手 (59 times)
  • 口 (56 times)
  • 自 (56 times)
  • 声 (54 times)
  • 年 (53 times)
  • 小 (52 times)
  • 分 (51 times)

You should recognize all of these by the end of WaniKani level 6 (the final being 思, 店, and 食). If you don’t know them yet, expect to by the end of the book!

Thanks to the inclusion of furigana, it doesn’t matter what level you are at in WaniKani to read along. However, the higher your level, the more kanji you’ll recognize. It’s also helpful to figure out unknown words if you recognize the kanji they are made up of. Here are some stats on WaniKani level:

  • By level 12, you should recognize about 50% of the unique kanji appearing in the story.
  • Near the end of level 20, you’ll recognize about 75% of the unique kanji.
  • Once you hit level 34, you’ll be at the 90% mark of unique kanji recognized.
  • Expect to see WaniKani-covered kanji you don’t recognize all the way through level 57.

Some kanji appear only once. Other kanji appear over 100 times. It may feel a bit uneven, but knowing some kanji will carry you a lot further than knowing others.

  • At the end of level 1 you will know 14.5% of the book’s total kanji.
  • Finishing up level 2 scores you recognition of nearly 27.3% of the book’s total kanji.
  • WaniKani’s free three-level trial covers 32.5% of the book’s total kanji.
  • Before you’re done with level 5, that’ll be just over 50% of the book’s total kanji in your memory.
  • Those who finish level 10 may wish the book didn’t have furigana, because that’s when you’ll know 80% of the book’s total kanji.
  • As you start out level 17, you’ll reach 90% of the book’s total kanji recognized.
  • Around the end of level 26, you’ll reach 95% of the book’s total kanji recognized.

There is only one kanji in the story not covered by WaniKani: . Let learning this one be your own personal triumph. But don’t get too cozy with it. It’s not a kanji you’ll get much use out of, unless you host a Japanese exchange student while living in Paris, France. And if that’s the case, think of the student as your own personal gaijin, and you’ll even remember how this kanji is pronounced.

9 Likes

Er, I’ve only ever seen this one used in names, except, maybe for the word 凱旋, but it’s quite infrequent…
Edit: Oooooh, now I get the French reference.

2 Likes

? Where? Recognized by the tool you wrote?

Nice stats - and thanks for the mnemonic! :smiley: Took a bit for me to make the connection with Paris, haha… :sweat:

I guess we’ll see whether or not it’s a name soon enough. :slight_smile:

That’s reassuring that it took you a bit too. :stuck_out_tongue:

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The crazy thing is that I remembered 凱旋 from 凱旋門, and still that didn’t immediately click.

Edit: … And now I understand why

It’s like my eyes see the words, and then my brain just throws them away.

5 Likes

Looks like its use here is in「凱旋将軍」. But I can’t tell you what that says or means, so I’m not looking too deeply into the content until reading starts. (I had looked up the first kanji pair since the first kanji wasn’t part of WaniKani.)

I may have gotten a little carried away after looking at this Wiktionary category and then clicking on the second link.

Sorry… It was late at night back when I did the stats and looked up that kanji, and I was probably overdue for getting to bed…

Since I’ve got the e-book, I extracted the text (removing pages that were non-story, such as author bio), then in a text editor did a regular expression find and replace to remove all non-kanji. And then I did did another regex to ensure that each kanji was on its own line, and every line had a kanji. That left me with a 4,932 line file. (And then removing duplicates resulted in 525 lines, for a unique kanji count.)

For the curious, the regex is: [^一-龯]

1 Like

Well, don’t worry, I know what it means :stuck_out_tongue: So, yeah, it’s indeed 凱旋, then.
I expect it to be metaphorical, though, or else the story is going to be very different than what I expected.

2 Likes

Aah, now I get it. Yeah you wrote ‘individual Kanji’ before, but for some reason my brain was still stuck on ‘unique’. That makes sense. :slight_smile: Guess I’m also due for sleep.

2 Likes

Hmmm… When I look at the book’s entry in FloFlo, it gives me 2570 individual words and 575 individual kanji for the book…? I mean, FloFlo is known for its misparses, especially in kana-heavy text, but that is quite the difference, isn’t it?

Whoa, 5000 individual Kanji, that would be quite an interesting read! (If I interpret FloFlo correctly, even Haruhi had less than 1700 individual Kanji :upside_down_face:)

I excluded the table of contents (since the chapter titles are repeated at the start of each chapter), the author bio at the end of the book, and the copyright notices. This may account for the discrepancies of 50 kanji and ~440 words overall.

Aside from that, I used the tool mecab to parse out words. It will of course not be perfect.