[2024] 多読/extensive reading challenge

Are most pages like that? I find it very difficult to read something when there aren’t many breaks. And having a ton of multi-page paragraphs would just make that worse…

3 Likes

Nah, not that bad usually. Back and forth dialogue is still rare, but a lot of stuff looks more like this

Thats from the naomom diary part which I would say is one of the easier parts, but if you can read that fine youll be chillin for the rest of the book I’d say. Theres no spoilers, so you can read it if you want.

3 Likes

I just finished 伯爵と妖精 4 and that was quite a fun read. I did enjoy the murder mystery in a closed setting with the extra mechanic of リディア being possessed at night. I kinda wish that the author had gone a bit further with it… but anyway it took 2/3 of the book as it is.
Once again, the resolution felt unbelievably fast, in like 5% of the whole book, but I got used to anyway.

I’m a bit torn about reading the next volume just now. On the one hand, I am having fun reading this series. On the other had, I’m somehow slow reading this series. I finally got to 90 books for the year, so if I rush, I can make it to 100 (or just 97 and lower my standards to add 3 more books I read this year that were half manga half text). But I can’t really rush reading those somehow.

4 Likes

I started quite late on this reading challenge (July 23rd) having just started reading manga this year with the ABBC, I set myself a goal of 3 manga this year as that seemed doable.

I think I just passed 1 year of studying Japanese this time (multiple failed attempts, never got remotely this far, always terrified of Kanji) - my goal by this point was to maybe have started a manga.

This year I’ve started and finished 4 manga

  • からかい上手の高木さん (1)
  • チーズスイートホーム(1)
  • 鬼滅の刃 1
  • 大海原と大海原 (1)

I’m now partway through my 5th manga 鬼滅の刃 2 (page 135 / 190ish) and expect to finish it soon.
I’m on day 94 of my personal 100 day reading challenge.

Now on an average day I can generally fit in a few pages of manga before bed (still leaning very heavily on a dictionary), on a good day I can read 15 to 20 and very rarely ~30 pages (although I’m seriously helped by fight scenes!).

Reading has gone from a distant goal to the core part of my Japanese study, most days lately I won’t do much study except reading and I can still really feel myself growing.

18 Likes

I just finished かがみの孤城 as well! I read part 2 in about a week which is also faster than I’ve read any book. I really liked the book overall! I didn’t know much about it and despite the fantasy backdrop it was surprisingly mundane for about 3/4th of it (presumably why Vanilla thought it was “pretty shit”?) It’s basically slice of life but it’s well done in my opinion, even though it can be a bit slow. The author is quite fond of 「その時だった」(that’s when it happened) and you’re like “what??”… but then most of the time it’s something pretty trivial.

Speaking of slow (SPOILERS)

5wow9z
I’m usually really bad at guessing what will happen next in a story but this seemed pretty obvious to me? At least it was my first thought when they learn they’re all from the same middle school, but remember things differently (e.g. number of classes per year). And as こころ later realizes, there were lots of other little hints.

「もっと早く気づくべきだったのかもしれない。」You don’t say!!

But yeah the whole end part was great. I didn’t foresee the part about 狼と七匹の子やぎ (or any other of the plot twists) but I’d never heard of this story. I regretted not looking it up when it was mentioned a couple of times! I wonder if its more famous in Japan than in my country (France)?

6 Likes
かがみの孤城 spoilers

I also had that theory at that point, but I was like “please don’t be that!”. I thought if it was that it should have been so apparent to the characters (particularly differences in clothing and speaking style) that it would have ruined the book. But in the end, the explanations for why they didn’t notice or ask revealing questions to each other (mostly due to their various social skill issues and wanting to avoid conflict) was reasonable enough that I was fine with it. It was also a much simpler explanation than the whole parallel world theory, so I think it’s good that the simpler explanation was the right one.

I didn’t guess the twist related to the fairy tale, but I also wasn’t familiar with it. I did guess the twist about who Aki was, but I didn’t guess any of the other major twists. I’m also usually pretty bad at guessing where a story will go. Personally though, I don’t mind if a story is predictable (referring to the different years part) if it’s well executed.

4 Likes
More かがみの孤城 spoilers

Yeah I thought it was a bit weird that it never came up, especially given that they spent a New Year together. But the book makes the point that at that age, kids don’t really care what year it is, to the point where ウレシノ doesn’t even know his? In any case, I think オオカミさま didn’t particularly intend for it to be a secret that they were from different years, that’s just how it happened. So it’s ok if it was dumb luck. I also liked how everything was explained, up to the details of the gaming consoles names and the fact that the TV was an old cathode-ray tube one.

Something that still bugs me though it that they should’ve found out earlier about the shifted days of the week. Even if they don’t go to school, こころ doesn’t go to the castle on weekends for example. They could’ve noticed the pattern.

Nice job guessing Aki’s plot twist, I absolutely did not see it coming!

4 Likes

:tada: :tada:
“No study, only read” feels so good. Very exciting that you’ve been able to get there!

8 Likes

Yeah, I went from not making much of any progress in reading to finishing over 30 manga volumes in a single year.

When you get over that initial bump it feels so good.

5 Likes

After reading Edogawa’s Murder Case of D Hill for a long while I switched gears a bit and am now reading SpyxFamily and re-reading Naruto in Japanese. Have to admit, reading Kishimoto’s author note at the beginning of Naruto vol 1. made me shed a tear :smiley:


I just saw Verasia has a version of 人間失格 with photos of Dazai and an amazing cover:

Adds to cart vigorously

2 Likes

After a forced break from reading for 4 weeks due to work & other obligations, I’m back on track now.

Making good progress on 夜のピクニック. It’s a long book, but I should finish it within a week or so. Unless I get distracted by something else.

My plans for December are to read two more books – so 24 in total for the year. I’ll definitely post a summary towards the end of the year.

8 Likes

I finished 青騎士 第2B号

I think I’ve accepted at this point that whatever the reason, I don’t like 青騎士 as much as Harta, and it makes me look forward to the 15th of the month when Harta comes out more, rather than less - but it is interesting enough in it’s own right to catch up with the issues I picked up as they were coming out (and probably keep reading past that as well). So I’ll try to stop comparing the two and appreciate it on those merits of its own.

A few memorable stories from this (half) issue:

銀銀黒曜 by あべまりな
A 読み切り about 鬼 hunted by humans.
In a sneaky bit of marketing, after I especially enjoyed this short story, a note let me know the author would have another in the next issue of ASUKA. I figured after I caught up on these magazines I’ve started reading, I’d try stepping out of the Kadokawa umbrella… but “there’s a story from an author whose work I’ve enjoyed” is as good a reason to try another magazine as any, and it looks like ASUKA’s a shojo magazine that’s published work by CLAMP, so I might just give it a try soonish…
image

出勤日和 by 長野香子
A covid-era 読み切り about a chance encounter on a rare trip to the office.
Made me wistful… at my job they closed the local branch office, and it was a very weird experience commuting one last time to a completely empty building to pick up stuff I’d left behind a year+ earlier thinking I’d be gone like a week tops. And anyway - the story captured well the parts of working in an office you do miss, I thought.
image

MMB by 大槻一翔
A fun beach volleyball 読み切り

11 Likes

I also used the book club (and my stressful week last week) as an excuse to read the volumes of 極主夫道 I’d accumulated off of a friend’s recommendations.
It’s a fun series! It was intimidating to me when I originally tried to read a little bit, but having played multiple 龍が如く games in Japanese since then, the slang and accents were no problem and it was a breeze. Might as well have been popcorn.

I would probably prefer if the series was just a little bit more grounded in a consistent plot or the characters were tuned to feel a little bit more than just vehicles for gags… and the main gag can feel a little repetitive sometimes… but it’s endearing and the art’s quite nice. It doesn’t really give me the impression that future volumes are going to hold like, big shocking surprises or departures from the formula, but it would probably still be fun to read a new volume every now and then.

8 Likes

I’m 2/3 of the way done 魔法少女育成計画 book 3, so I need to figure out what to read next. Here’s what I already own:

  • 博士の愛した数式
  • All You Need Is Kill
  • キッチン
  • 殺人出産
  • 終末なにしてますか? 忙しいですか? 救ってもらっていいですか?
  • 本好きの下剋上 13
  • 三日間の幸福
  • アオハル・ポイント

Anyone have particular recommendations from those? I’m leaning towards reading one of the regular novels and then getting back into 本好きの下剋上 afterward, but I can’t decide which one to read.

7 Likes

博士の愛した数式 and キッチン are both slow and good. I recommend キッチン if you want to read something shorter – it’s only one of two stories in the book and shouldn’t take too long. It’s written in a stream of consciousness way, so whether you like it or not probably depends on how much you can relate to the protagonist. I personally enjoyed it, but didn’t quite “get” it.

博士の愛した数式 is a bit longer. It’s heartwarming, but in a subdued way, so don’t expect big drama.

Both books are calming in their own way.

4 Likes

Fully agree. Kitchen (the book) also contains a second story which I liked equally well if not better.

殺人出産 on the other hand, is a dystopia and it has its fair share of … moments. So be prepared for a roller-coaster ride :upside_down_face:

6 Likes

Calming is good since 魔法少女育成計画 is violent and complicated. But reading something I may not “get” is perhaps not the right choice right now. I’d probably rather read something on the simpler side.

Is 殺人出産 about the same as コンビニ人間 in terms of difficulty?

1 Like

It’s a pretty easy read in my opinion. I think one could say it’s like コンビニ人間 but without the long-winding philosophical excerpts of a certain you-know-who.
But it’s been a while so everybody please object if you have a different opinion…

Edit: But I can assure you that 博士 is not difficult either. For キッチン I found it sometimes a bit difficult to understand whether something was a real thing or a metaphorical thing, but I read it quite early in my Japanese learning, so ymmv.

3 Likes

It also seems to be on the shorter side, so maybe it makes sense to read next.

The book contains four short stories, of which the titular story was the longest (~120 pages, you can see the schedule here: 殺人出産 🤰🔪 Book Club). The shortest one is only 5 or 10 pages, but really good imho. Other than that, the stories’ topics differ but the dystopian / “holding a mirror to society” theme is consistent throughout.

3 Likes