About half done with All You Need Is Kill, and I also broke into triple digits on manga volumes finished! I’m behind on 2 book clubs but at least I’m still reading a lot. With my novel being what it is, and my main manga being Claymore… I will be glad when I finish one or the other and am not spending so much time reading about battles and death, lol.
How is it so far? Both in terms of difficulty and enjoyment.
Hmm, I don’t think it’s that difficult. There a lot of words that I either don’t see a lot of in other places or are made up for this particular story, but the nature of the story means all of those words get repeated a lot. Sometimes I’ll see a long string of kanji and my brain will start to zone out, but then I think, no, that is the same long string of kanji from before, he is just talking about what troop (or whatever) he’s in!! Once you get over the vocabulary hurdle, the grammar seems normal (other than some run-on, no-punctuation sentences in dialogue or thought), and the situations are not at all incomprehensible. Also so far I would say the word that feels most repeated is ファック.
Oh right, enjoyment! I am enjoying it. I find the main character interesting and I’m curious where the story will go in the second half of the book.
Im not on the list but im reading too : https://bookmeter.com/users/1117718
I finished volume 7 yesterday. That makes DanMachi the longest I have read any series in Japanese (I previously had multiple instances of 6 books). (Just tagging @afunian instead of posting in the DanMachi thread).
This book took an interesting turn toward the “darker and edgier” by taking place in red light district and featuring things like (spoilers and trigger warning) human(oid?) trafficking and sexual assault. In particular, those points were handled relatively well for a light novel (meaning none of it is played for laugh). I also think the terror the main character is feeling about his situation is well transmitted, and provides way more tension than the fight scenes: during a fight, you get one arm lopped off? Have a potion, you’re all set. Actually, in this very book one character literally blows herself up (as in literally; she uses magic to turn herself into an actual bomb). Soooo, she’s dead, right? Right? Nah, she got better (how??? Well, thanks to a potion of higher plot invincibility of course). On the other hand, the book conveys explicitly that sexual assault will leave mental damages that cannot just be magically healed. (And I’m going to leave it here, because that’s not something I want to expand on).
Anyway, the story centers around the attempt of the main character to save one victim of (demi?)human trafficking, and that forces him to face some hard facts: even if he saves her, well, there are still hundreds, probably thousands of others in her situation. Is he going to save them too? No? Why? Also, there’s a huge demand for prostitutes in the city (well, female ones, at least, I haven’t spotted a single male one, even though adventurers, the main group of “customers” seem split roughly 50/50 in terms of gender, and even if only male adventurers go to brothels, they can’t all be heterosexual?). Even if the main character saves a hundred of them, they will immediately be replaced. Closing the red light district is not an option either, it would just become more underground, illegal and thus dangerous. Additionally, the red light district is controlled by a very powerful ファミリア, meaning that if he does anything funny, basically not only him but also his friends will be at risk.
Sadly, at the last minute, the author backpedaled. Or maybe the editor? I don’t know, but suddenly (1) nobody died (even people who were slaughtered during the last fight scene), no explanation is given. (2) actually said girl is still a virgin by miracle (!), thus completely different from all the others and thus justify saving her specifically without any cognitive dissonance.
I have to say, I’m not super happy about that resolution. Not only is it unbelievable, but I also think that having to make hard choice between multiple wrong options would have given an opportunity for the main character (and the story telling) to mature… Well, I guess you can’t really go against what your target audience is supposed to expect (<- that’s one reason why I think the editor backpedaled).
Anyway, that was still an entertaining read, especially for a light novel. I’m moving on to volume 8; let’s see if the author will keep adding some dark and edgy in the future. I’m assuming volume 8 will be back to goofy plot, to give a bit of a breather after this volume, though.
Would you…recommend this series? The title makes it seem iffy, but I’ve seen you post a lot about it, including the fan-service illustrations. It happens to be 50% off on Amazon (through points) right now, so I’m a little curious.
That’s a tough call. I can tell you that the title is a
click read(?) bait, and 2 pages in the main character mentions that it’s definitely stupid. There’s more fan service than I would be comfortable with usually, and despite that all potentially romantic interactions basically go nowhere, with the characters involved just blushing. The writing is also very light-novel-like, with space just wasted with lines of あs instead of simply saying the character is screaming. Still, the action is good and the overall plot is entertaining if you like J-rpg.
I’d say it’s good pulp; it allows me to unplug my brain after a rough day at work. I would not pay (full price at least) for it, but it’s available at my local library. At the same time, I would not just recommend it to everyone.
I’m trying to start まちカドまぞく, but the first chapter is quite a challenge. There’s a lot more exposition than I’m used to seeing in manga, and mostly about complex topics like clans of light and darkness and their demon powers being sealed or some such stuff. Probably best to start fresh tomorrow when I’m not as tired.
Well that still went poorly. I really need to get back to reading samples of manga before buying, rather than just buying them because they sound interesting. I kind of assumed it would be a comparable difficulty to ご注文はうさぎですか because they are both from Manga Time Kirara, and I didn’t really consider the fantasy premise. This is the second time now, after 此花亭奇譚 was similarly difficult (based on the first couple chapters). I scanned through the rest of volume one of まちカドまぞく, and it is dense (for a manga) throughout, so I think I’m gonna to pass on it for now.
Since I have to concentrate and look up a lot when reading books, right now I want manga to be a more relaxing activity. I’ll eventually get back to these harder manga, but for now I want something I can understand by only looking up a handful of words. On that note, I’m really enjoying こみっくがーるず. It’s pretty funny, and I like the characters. I’m still getting used to a small number of manga/art specific terms, but it’s not that hard overall.
Randomly taking a shot at reading that:
Edit: nope, ok I get it now.
I’m mostly impressed that you knew the on’yomi for 此.
I learned it from the word 此岸, which I got through a Floflo vocab list. It’s that anime where the main characters are a god with no money, a ghost contracted to him who can turn into a sword, and a girl who can get out of her body, the link looking like a cat tail.
Obviously, on’yomi are easier to remember than titles.
Ah, ノラガミ. I got the first three manga for free, but I haven’t read them yet.
Yes, that one.
Wow, I even watched the first season of that anime and I had no idea what anime you were talking about from that description. I remember all those things now, but it sure does show how weak of an impression that anime left on me.
I remember 斬 彼岸 and 此岸.
Plot wise, beyond what I said, I remember thinking “yes, the female character will be kicking ass instead of being a damsel in distress!” Then she became a damsel in distress. Such disappoint.
The more I think about it, the more I’m starting to remember, though. I remember there’s another god(ess) who makes you poor. Also, the main plot line now.
I wasn’t sure what you were talking about until you mentioned the girl who could leave her body with the cat tail. Then I was like ahhhhh yeah. I feel like I’m frequently disappointed by boring female characters.
Fortunately 獣の奏者 hasn’t disappointed yet! So far the other book I’m reading also has an interesting female lead. At least everything isn’t immediately going her way (it starts with a persistent nightmare). The only annoying plot element is that she doesn’t realize she’s the most beautiful girl around. Hah.
That’s such a common affliction though!
I finished reading 小説ミラーさん today. It’s the first novel where I understood almost everything! I highly recommend it to anyone at the N5/N4 level.