[2022] 多読/extensive reading challenge

Fun fact, shortly after that conversation, both words appeared back to back in the book I was reading (and just finished, hence my posting).


As could be inferred from my recent pattern, I just read ビブリア古書堂の事件手帖4. It was an interesting deviation from the pattern that was established so far. Until now, each volume was basically a succession of three mysteries, with no real connection (except temporal). That format gave a nice impression of witnessing the everyday life of the characters. This time, though, there was only one overarching mystery, split roughly in three steps. The dramatic tension was also much higher than before. Also (kyaa spoiler) the main character confessed his love.

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I was really confused when I first realized pretty far in that わたくし was actually male. Had to rethink through the whole beginning because it really changes the context. :sweat_smile:

Glad to find that I was not alone in that mistake. :rofl::upside_down_face::turtle:

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According to Book Meter, 魔法少女育成計画 was the 50th Japanese book/manga I’ve finished. Also, since I’m not starting my next book (real book, not manga) until 霧のむこうのふしぎな町 in mid-December, I figured I’d catch up on my English book backlog. I’ve read 130 pages so far today, which is a nice change from 15 pages on a great day in Japanese.

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Finished the first section of こころ and some of the dialogue leaves me so delighted.

Paraphrasing:

Protagonist: Hey can I join you on your walk?
先生: Actually I’m visiting a friend’s grave.
Protagonist: Isn’t it the same thing?
せんせい: Taking a walk and visiting a grave?
Protagonist: Yeah?
せんせい:… I feel like it’s different.
Protagonist: Well whatever, can I still join you?
せんせい: No.

Because that’s what you say to someone who’s visiting a grave.

And another scene…

Protagonist: Well I just got back from visiting my father. My mom wrote saying he has a kidney illness and he collapsed but when I saw him he seemed to be doing a lot better. So hopefully things are looking up.
せんせい: Yeah? Well it’s when you think they’re doing a lot better that they die. My wife’s mother died from that. Don’t be happy just yet.
Protagonist: Oh…

Because that’s what you say to someone who’s father is ill.

And a few pages later.

せんせい: Hey how much money does your family have?
Protagonist: Uh, what?
せんせい: Not to be rude or anything. But y’know you should get that squared out before your dad kicks the bucket.
Protagonist: Yeah I guess…
せんせい: Yeah seriously. Better do it soon. Cause y’know. He’s probably gonna die.

And one more.
せんせい: Hey who do you think is gonna die first? Me or you?
せんせい’s Wife: Um…

This book is so silly.

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I loved, loved, loved Autumn Prison! It was a book that, for each short story, at times made me want to jump into the world and enjoy each “curse” and then other times made me feel extremely cozy and safe in my bed while shuddering at how dark and scary it got.

It also made me realize that I really enjoy books that have a collection of short stories. I haven’t really read much, Japanese or otherwise.

Anyone have any recommendations?

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This is not really a recommendation (sorry for that!) but more of a meta-recommendation: I recently discovered the blog http://www.tsundokureader.com/ which contains reviews of Japanese books and so I pass this on to you in the hope that you might find something interesting there.

(Warning: those reviews are usually very detailed and contain lots of spoilers, so read them with caution if you don’t like that!)

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Wow this looks fantastic! I’ve been trying to find a book site that reviewed Japanese books that weren’t just Murakami and the like.

Thanks so much!

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With the exception of the magic-related vocabulary, it’s all pretty standard conversational Japanese, plus it has furigana to help with any unknown kanji. I’d say it’s pretty easy and a good manga if you’re still not used to reading in Japanese.

Kero’s Osaka-ben can be a little tricky, but there are plenty of resources to help understand it because Osaka-ben is so well known.

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Is the magic vocabulary transferable, or is it mostly katakana words specific to this series?

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That’s great, thanks for such a detailed reply.

I think I’ll give it a go then once I’ve finished my graded readers as I do have quite a few of them to read so it should keep me going for a while :blush:

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The only one I’ve read (apart from Autumn Prison) is とかげ by 吉本ばなな. It felt kind of hard… and wierd, but the stories were quite interesting.

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It’s usually actual Japanese magic-related words. For example, 杖 つえ for her magic stick/staff thing and 魔法陣 まほうじん I’ve seen in other stories.

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I did enjoy 七つの怖い扉 (新潮文庫)
As the title implies, it is a collection of 7 short horror stories.
I wonder if I should read it again, actually… I didn’t get the point of the last story, but I read this book 3 or 4 years ago so I may have missed something; I’m curious to see how much my comprehension improved since that time.

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I wanted to check out prices on http://www.kinokuniya.com/us, but apparently it’s been down for 7 weeks… I wonder what’s going on…

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They say it’s down for system maintenance…
https://usa.kinokuniya.com/shop-online-under-maintenance-page

7 weeks sounds like a long time, though.

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Yeah, it says that. But 7 weeks means something else is going on. I wonder if it’s a randomware kind of thing, or something along those lines.

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Wow! More than 1000 edits on the table! We are doing it, people!

In related news, I have just finished my 29th book this year, and I am thus only one book away from my stretch stretch stretch goal. Which I am probably going to pass as well.
I also managed to get 6 books done this month alone, which is as much as the whole of last year.
From bookmeter:
readInNovember

(That number is a bit disingenuous, since I finished Haruhi on the 2nd of November, so the page count is a bit inflated; averaging with October, it’s more like 5 books per month/51 pages per day)

Well, getting that milestone of 6 books in a month is also why I rushed to the end of キッチン, sorry @NicoleRauch and the other members of the book club :sweat_smile: I haven’t been even that present in the threads… I did like the book, though! (I’ll write more on that topic once we get to the official end)

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That’s quite impressive, @Naphthalene! I think I got 4 books done in my best month, but I’m way too much of an irregular reader, so there’s no way I can keep up that pace for one year as I tend to shift my focus to other things after a while.

I also started reading キッチン today after the description in the book club thread piqued my interest – and also because it’s only 200 pages. I got 24% done, so I guess it’ll be a quick read. Not sure where things are going from now on, but I really like the gentle nature of the book.

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Well, that pace is a recent change. Until August, my reading was almost exclusively focused on the book clubs (so, not much reading) with just a little bit from whatever other book I was reading at the time. I actually complained (?) about that in this very thread. I was only reading a bit more than 10 pages per day on average according to bookmeter.
Part of that was due to me procrastinating from reading the second and third 新世界より. They were
quite massive and, honestly, the first part of 2nd one wasn’t really fun to read. I do not like buying new books when I have unread ones, so I was a bit stuck. Anyway, the obon season got me enough time and motivation to finally read through the 2nd volume, then a business trip abroad in early September (12h flight x2) gave me the opportunity to just crush the 3rd one in two literal sittings (although, those were long sittings).

Boring anecdote

On the way out of Japan, I was sitting next to another French person who chatted with me during the meal time. He was amazed that I could just keep reading Japanese forever (I think that was about 6 hours in?). We talked a bit about how I have been learning Japanese, and he told me “I actually thought that, once you became adult, it was impossible to learn enough Japanese to get good enough to read books.” I obviously answered that no, it’s completely possible. Then he asked how long I have been learning Japanese, I replied “10 years+, while living in Japan”, he paused and then went “… yeah, that’s as close to ‘impossible’ as it gets.”
I tried to mention that it’s possible to do it much earlier with the help of a dictionary, and that there were much faster learners than me, but I just couldn’t change his mind. :woman_shrugging:

Being done with those two books opened the floodgates, I bought a bunch of books (and borrowed a bunch from the library too) and went from just under 2 books per months (14 books total in 8 months) to 5 books per months from September onward (so x2.5).

I do not know if I will keep this pace next year; it is quite time consuming. I’ve been thinking to switch to watching anime/drama/movie instead, to focus more on listening comprehension. That being said, I’m not really into anime and I don’t even know what to watch. None of the descriptions of the Jdrama I checked seemed particularly interesting either :confused: So that’s still an interrogation mark.

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Meanwhile, I have 7 unread books and I’m thinking about buying more that I have no immediate plan to read. :upside_down_face:


Tell me what you like and I’m sure I can come up with 5-10 recommendations. :wink:
Unless you really just don’t want to watch any anime.

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