Absolute Beginners Book Club // Currently reading When Will Ayumu Make His Move

The three books I showed all have separate stories, so people can jump in at any time.
The first is aimed at Japanese Learners, the second and third are 1st grade, but believe both where series with higher levels too. So if we want stories, we can look for these series (but 2nd and 3rd grade has more kanji, so might be easier than 1st)

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How were other people feeling with the 2年生 difficulty level? I thought it was just about right - there were some things that I needed to look up, but not so much that it felt like hard work. I wouldn’t want to drop down to 1年生 level, and I still feel like there is much more for me learn by reading on 2年生 level before moving up to 3年生.

I thought that we could have gone at a slightly faster pace (like 2 pages a day) and still have been ok.

I liked that the chapters are independent (I did skip one). And I also liked that the book is factual, so that we can use prior knowledge to help us understand the language.


I started reading Yotsuba with the Yotsuba reading club long before I was ready for it (although I do love Yotsuba, enjoyed the experience, had lots of great help on the thread from the kind people there, and am looking forward to vol.7 when the club resumes with that). So… I wonder, is there a manga easier than Yotsuba?

Me too. Personally, I think 3年生 would be stretching it a bit too much for me.

Chi’s Sweet home is easier =)
And often suggested together with Yotsuba as one of the “first to read” as beginners (saw it on several sites when I looked for where to start, that was two years ago though)

And I do agree, I find them the easiest of my collection =)

As for the other books, here is an amazon link to 10分で読める話
It has lots of difficulties to pick from if we want those =)

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I started the book at level 5 in Wanikani and I am 17 now. Sometimes I re-read the first chapters to my son and I can understand almost everything, so I’m happy with the progress… but then… I tried to read the sample pages of 時をかける少女 and pfffff imposible.

I feel there is a huge gap between the 2. Is 時をかける少女 specially hard? is there another book we could choose that could be in between the 2?

Thank you! That’d be my choice then for the ABJBC!

(Right, and now I MUST get to bed! Thanks again @emucat for setting this up!)


Look, what i have laying around here XD


Yay!! The exact same ones too!!
You can show the inside to people too! I still have sleeping kitty in lap :wink:

時をかける少女 is pretty easy as far as books go. 魔女の宅急便 was maybe a bit harder, but there was also over half a year’s difference in my abilities between the two, so it’s hard to say how much of the difference is from that.

Also just to chime in in general. I agree with @marcusp that it may not be worth a complicated nomination process for something like this. I thought @marcusp did a great job by just picking something simple and cute and saying “hey I’m reading this, who wants to join”. Just my two cents.


there is a 3年生


It looks awesome!!!


Recommended for you if:
You have a good knowledge of Japanese grammar, vocabulary and kanji (around N3 level recommended)


I’d love to join this.
I’m terrible at reading, not only Japanese, but also English, so I have a few question that may or may not have been answered already:

  • I understand that everyone reads the same (easy) book and then ‘discusses’ it in this thread. What are discussions about? Questions on the story or more about specific challenges in reading the book? (or maybe both?)
  • Despite the thread being an hour old, it looks like a book is currently being read? What would be a wise time to join? The new book in March?
  • A question for my fellow Dutch WK’ers. What (in your experience) is the easiest way of obtaining these kind of books? I live in Leiden; is there some shop relatively close I should know about, or is Amazon the way to go?

Thanks in advance for any answers.

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I found atashinshi, which i nominated in the beginners book club on the search for recommended beginner manga too. I think this might be not a bad choice, because the storys are quite short and about everdy life.

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Oh right, I have nominated some of these in the other, but would be more this level:
Classic western fairytales:

Japanese Fairytales:

I like the idea of doing the Japanese fairytales, but it is expensive for the whole set! And not sure how satisfying just one would be…

@Toyger, do you have an Amazon link for the lower set of Japanese tales (the ones with the more painterly style illustrations)?

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We are currently reading a book in this thread:

You can join anytime as every chapter is independent. I bought the ebook. We expect to finish it at mid March, so I created this new thread to decide on a new book.

Mainly we post our translations of the page of the day, and ask about grammar points.
Some times we also talk about a fun fact of the book :wink:


We’d probably do the set if we pick them, since it is sold as a set (and easy enough to do all, each book is basically a chapter from other books :wink: )

How long are these guys?

The one’s I read in PIBO are around 10-15 pagess

I’ll check later, but sounds about right. I’d guess 10-20 pages each