[2022] 多読/extensive reading challenge

That sounds like a cool library. Do libraries in the US typically have a broad Japanese selection? (unless I inferred wrongly)

I loved those books! :smiley: if they’re of a similar difficulty as what you describe, those might be a nice, easy- ish read. Though vocab is probably my biggest weakness right now… I am interested in how they differentiated vampires and vampyres in the Japanese. :thinking: 吸血鬼 Only covers one of those. Maybe same Kanji, different furigana? :stuck_out_tongue:

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I actually live in Japan right now, but I’m originally from the US. Just spending a few years over here teaching through the JET Program. Although my library back in my college town did have a pretty good selection in Japanese (lived near Detroit, and had a lot of Japanese expats working at the car companies there so there was demand for them), most U.S. libraries definitely don’t have that much haha.

I think Cirque du Freak might be a little bit higher of a level from looking over the first few pages/the size of the text, but only slightly so. And trust me, I’m suuuper weak in vocab too haha. Like, I’m pretty sure I only know 40% of the vocab in Kino no Tabi according to my floflo.moe account, so depending on how easy/difficult you found that book, you might have a way easier time than me with these books.

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I finally read 紅霞後宮物語. It was really good! Much better than I expected.
Internal fights for influence and political power isn’t something I usually pick for my readings, so I didn’t think I would like it so much, but I was wrong; it was quite exciting. Also, it’s nice to have a main character who’s a woman who kicks ass.
Fair warning: the setting is inspired by medieval China. So you get people with Chinese looking names, except they are read as Japanese on’yomi (which makes no sense from an historical point of view). They are also using a lot of stiff or outdated grammar, to show you it’s in the past. So, I guess it might be a bit painful at first if you aren’t familiar with those.

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:heart_eyes::heart_eyes::heart_eyes:

It’s been on my TBR list since I started making TBR lists for Japanese books, lol. I want to finish Moribito first but I’m excited to read this too!!

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…What are the odds that my newest level kanji, 軒, the house counter, would just happen to show up in the chapter I last read? Have I ever needed that counter before that exact moment? Or the appearance of the vocabulary 仰天 during class today?

Sometimes I am very unnerved by the speed at which my most recent lessons get utilized.

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Koichi knows when you’ve been reviewing, he knows when you’ve been late, he knows if you’ve done SRS on time, fear the crabbigator for goodness sake…

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It was recommended to me about one year ago, and it was sitting on my shelf for maybe 6 months. Against all hope, I was waiting to see if it would be picked by the intermediate book club… But I don’t see that happening.

In any case, I will definitely keep reading the series, which is going to be a first since I discovered light novels. I will keep going through my own list of things to read first though.

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The book that I’m reading’s backdrop is about making a dictionary, and it goes into great detail about the entire process. My interest in it waxes and wanes but overall it’s a pretty good book and pretty interesting to read as a Japanese-learner.

One thing that got to me was that one of the characters had to explain what 和語 was to another character and it kind of blew my mind because I would have thought any Japanese person would know that. But then again if you said Past Perfect or Auxiliary Verb to me I’d also probably be like, uh what? It’s crazy how learning a language is also kind of like learning linguistics in a way.

Here's the whole exchange for the curious, no spoilers.

「引きやすいように、辞書は小口(ページを開く部分)に黒い印がついていますよね。これを見ると一目瞭然なのですが、日本語は、単語の頭に来る音が『あ行』か『か行』か『さ行』であることが、とても多いんです」

「本当だ」

岸辺は数冊の辞書を見比べた。どの辞書も、「あ行」から「さ行」までの分量が多く、「た行」がはじまるのは、全体の半分以上を過ぎたあたりだ。

「逆に、『や行』『ら行』『わ行』あたりは、費やしているページが少ないでしょう。これは、和語が少ないからです」

「和語?」

「漢語やカタカナの外来語ではない、日本にもともとあった言葉のことです。とにかく、五十音順に並べると、『あ行』から『さ行』までに単語が集中するんです。ですから、全体の半分あたりのページに来る単語が、『す』か『せ』ではじまるものであれば、その辞書は後半が手薄になることもなく、バランスよく言葉を網羅している、と言えます」

Also a bonus Shiritori Winning Strategy

松本先生が微笑み、愛おしそうに小口の黒い印を指でたどった。「しりとりに勝ちたかったら、単語の末尾が『あ行』『か行』『さ行』で終わる言葉を言うのは避け、『や行』や『ら行』や『わ行』で終わる言葉をひねりだすことです。『怪獣』や『監査』ではなく、『鎌倉』『カストリ』などを、どんどん相手にぶつけるといいでしょう。ただ、これがなかなか、咄嗟に思いつくのが難しい」

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And done! And I somehow read both books in the span of exactly one week. That’s probably a personal best in terms of speed. (So, @seanblue, 600 pages is what I would read in practice on a week where I’m not busy)

The book I just read was ビブリア古書堂の事件手帖 1. I knew nothing about it, except for the description on its floflo page. It said something around the line of “a story about someone who reads more books than you.” Which made me go tableflipchallengeaccepted.
Turns out said character does read more books than me, by a landslide. The story was somewhat unexpected, going mostly for a Sherlock Holmes-lite style of mystery solving. I thought it would just be a slice of life, but that was a pleasant surprise actually.
The story feels pretty good as a stand-alone, so I’m not sure why it became a series (or if it was even intended to be a series), but anyway I bought the second volume at the same time as the first, so I’ll probably read it at some point.

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That sounds like kindof a nice read actually!

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I saw that one on Floflo some time ago and thought it sounded interesting but probably too difficult at that moment. How would you say the difficulty is compared to something like…キノ for example? (I don’t have that many references yet :sweat_smile:)

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image


I wonder if something like Hyouka would be good for book club. Mystery would certainly be different from stuff we’ve done recently / are doing next.

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Today I had a reading attack :slight_smile:

(I returned home from Japan :sob:, and so I had a lot of time at hand…)

First I started to read 神の子供達 and I was too lazy to look up words, so I just kept reading… I had looked up and learned a bunch of words and kanji at the start of the first chapter, and that was apparently enough for me to finish the first chapter with an understanding of probably 80% or more, so I could follow the story well. That was 25 pages in one go!
I’m really happy about reading this book. Most of the vocabulary is N3 which is a good preparation for me, and the grammar also seems to be at that level. Fun fact: The author often uses a grammar point that I had just learned yesterday in language school (~ のは、~ です), and I had to smile a little each time I realized this.
Unfortunately, chapter 2 did not go as smoothly because it is a completely new scene, so new words and kanji, and I was still too lazy to look them up. After a few pages I realized this and stopped (will reread with looking up more stuff, in the hope that it helps in the same way as for chapter 1).

Instead, I switched to 少女終末旅行 and finished off the series (I only had 2 volumes left anyways because I had done one chapter each evening over the past few weeks).

After that, I started to catch up on Zenitendou (still stuck on week 2 :flushed:) but I did not get very far yet - that was about enough for one day…

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It was! I wouldn’t say it’s the book of the year or anything, but I enjoyed it.

It’s really hard to say. :thinking: on the one hand it has no gun description, on the other hand it uses crazy kanjis like 瞠る. Sure, it gives furigana the first time around, but when you bump into it again 50 pages later, you’re on your own. Actually, for that reason, reading fast may be a plus…
In general, I’d say it’s slightly harder than Kino, but since the setting is much closer to everyday life, it’s easier to piece things together? (I’m not helping at all, am I)

Mysteries would certainly be fun, as we get to discuss our respective theories. The main problem is getting people to care about the genre :thinking: I don’t have the image that it’s popular among the readers we have. (Maybe we could have an underhanded poll about “what’s your favorite genre?” :stuck_out_tongue:)

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Actually, that gives me hope since at level 21 most kanji are still crazy for me so that’s not my biggest issue. A more everyday setting would probably prevent those moments of… “did I misunderstand everything or did something really weird just happen?” that I had all the time with キノ (usually something really weird had happened :stuck_out_tongue:).
Well, maybe when we are done with the next round of the intermediate book club.

I’d actually be into this. I don’t know about others but this seems much closer to what I’d actually choose to read on my own. Mistery is a big part of what I read in the languages I actually know well :sweat_smile:.

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You have unlocked the greatest secret
@seanblue

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I’d be kind of interested in this poll, even if we don’t use it for anything. I’m kind of just curious.

I actually don’t usually read mystery stuff in English. For now, the hardcore sci-fi and fantasy stuff I would normally read still feels out of reach in Japanese, so I’m looking for other interesting things to read. (Though I am hoping that Haruhi will let me bridge the gap and move to more sci-fi and fantasy soon.)

:eyes:

I mean, I’m partly getting through 放浪息子 more quickly because I’m not looking up as much. (But it’s also partly because I’m getting used to the writing style and the speaking style for each of the characters.) I was actually annoyed that the last two chapters were a lot harder, so I had to slow down a bit to avoid missing seemingly important details.

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I’d definitely be interested in reading some mysteries after the next two books.

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While I’ve said I was going to read やがて君になる 佐伯沙弥香について a few times before, I have actually read it now. With that, I have now read a total of six books in Japanese, and I’d say that this was the best one so far. (In fact, while my reading goal was 15 pages per day, I ended up reading a lot more than that and finishing the whole book in four days).

While it is a prequel/spin-off, I feel like it didn’t really rely on that much at all - other than knowing how it would end(since it’s a prequel), and maybe making me more interested in this book in the first place, I wouldn’t say that having read the main manga series really increased my enjoyment of this book all that much. That said, that’s not really a bad thing, because it worked really well on its own.

The person who helped write the book really doesn’t seem to believe in chapters, though, because it’s only divided into two parts with no actual chapter division or anything like that (there are still occasional breaks in the text though).

Overall, the book definitely made me like Sayaka more!

And difficulty-wise, I feel like it was a little bit harder than Kino. It has similar amounts of unique vocab, and no gun descriptions or anything specialised like that unlike Kino, but I felt like the grammar was a little bit harder and it seemed like there was a bit more variety in the Kanji used. Some words were used quite a bit, so anyone who reads this book would probably learn those! (If they don’t know them already (

Now for more spoilery stuff: I kind of feel like there was a certain point when the Senpai’s actions/words slowly started coming across as the “playing” she later described the relationship as… and then the way she acted slowly became more and more like that, and it also seemed like Sayaka slowly started to suspect things but didn’t want to believe it… and then it eventually just all came crashing down. Not ending the book right away at that point did help give it a slightly happier ending though!

Also, even if I knew what was going to happen in the second part, it was nice to read the first part which wasn’t mentioned in the manga. Even though my own life is pretty different from hers, some of Sayaka’s experiences, and maybe even more so her thoughts and feelings about them, were surprisingly relatable.

Also, It seems incredibly likely that the girl in the book store was Yuu, considering the way she was described, and the fact that she lives in a bookstore, matches up.

Now I’m going to read the second book! I also happened to see that there will be a third book too when I opened it just now (there was an announcement inside the second book)

…and wow, this post really ended up being a lot longer than I thought it would be

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I read when the stories take place for the three books and it seems like a good way to structure it. I didn’t really like Sayaka in the anime much (though she got better towards the end), so it’s good to hear that she’s more likable in the spin-off.

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