Absolute Beginners Book Club // Now reading: Cells at Work! // Next: Ruri Dragon

I’ve got a nomination as well.



A series of three mystery stories with a children’s bookstore owner named Hanae who decided to become a detective. Based on the first book, all the cases involve cats in someway, though they’re not mostly about the cats. The mysteries are all pretty simple (it’s meant for elementary schoolers, after all) and not too serious.

The description from Bookwalker, for anyone interested:


amazon.com - bonus hilariously terrible, obviously machine-assisted translation of the title
Bookwalker ebook

Personal Opinion

The first book was great. I haven’t read this book yet, but presumably it’s of similar quality. Hanae is cute as heck and all the mysteries were nice. It’s a really good difficulty for the Absolute Beginner club and is a book (with pictures) rather than a manga.

Pros and Cons for the Book Club


  • As mentioned, a book rather than a manga, so it has a good amount of writing that’s not just dialogue. We’ll also have had a couple of manga in a row, so changing it up would be nice.
  • The characters are all humans, rather than animals. Cats are involved, but are not the main focus of any stories. (This is probably more up to taste, but it is a change from the last couple of books, so I thought that might make it a pro.)
  • Of course, all the language is pretty simple (it’s intended for 3rd-4th graders, from what I’ve seen.)
  • I’ve seen people ask about doing a follow up for the first book club several times, so there’s definitely interest in the book already.
  • Hanae is cute as heck (her cat… maybe not so much?)


  • It’s a sequel, so some people might be put off by that. However, the stories in the first volume were all pretty independent, and the book has a page with introductions for all the characters, included those returning from the last book.
  • It’s a bit longer than the first book–135 pages vs 155, based on the Bookwalker listing. I don’t really think the extra 20 pages will be a big deal, but I figured I’d mention it.
  • The stories are fairly long–the first and third are around 60 pages each, while the second is around 20, based on the table of contents. So it’s a bit harder to break up into different weeks (can’t just do “one chapter per week” or something like that.) The group for the first book did around 15 pages a week, by the look of it, though it’s hard for me to figure out exactly.


The Bookwalker ebook preview - can also get to it from the Bookwalker link above

First Three Pages of Chapter One

Difficulty Poll

How much effort would you need to read this book?

  • No effort at all
  • Minimal effort
  • Just right
  • Challenging
  • Impossible, even with everyone’s help
  • I don’t know (please click this if you’re not voting seriously)

0 voters


Those sample pages are much less intimidating than I was bracing myself for.


But we already read this book!!

Edit: I see you already put in on the post :wink:

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For the next book, I’m fine with my nomination for Wanted

Am I allowed to nominate more than one book, by the way?

As many as you want

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(Well… within reason. :stuck_out_tongue: )

I made a home thread for チーズスイートホーム \o/ :33

We will finish Shirokuma in 4-5 weeks, depending on the vote regarding the long chapter, and Chii is gonna take from 5-7 weeks /o/
Also, have we decided if we want a break after Shirokuma, btw? :thinking: I wonder where to post that poll if not


Hey guys! IDK what to do, but i would like to join in. what should i do? can anyone direct me around a little? thanks

There’s a poll up on the top of this thread where you can say that you’ll be joining us. Then all you have to do is get yourself the book, and interact with us on the forums along the way!

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Easier said than done…

Is it? .-.

What’s that even supposed to mean? :joy:

Easier said than done = Saying “grab a copy” is easy. Actually grabbing a copy is hard.

I mean, yes. Then, isn’t everything easier said than done?
You usually say that when things are especially hard, and I don’t think buying an ebook or book online is something easier said than done. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Well, if you live in Namibia it is…

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It might be, I’m not familiar.

I still don’t quite understand the intent behind that statement, though.

Do you want advice as to how to do it, or is it supposed to be a negative comment about the way things were phrased? I might be looking too much into it, and if you didn’t mean anything by it, (which I doubt going by your next comment), I apologize.

Otherwise, of course I don’t know how things are in Namibia, but you seem to have an internet connection and a WaniKani membership. Buying an ebook shouldn’t be that different, and it’s only around $4. If you don’t want to, or can’t for other reasons, then that’s fair, but I still think saying, “Easier said than done.” is a little reductive.

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Not any kind of complaint or real comment, just a personal note that it is easier said than done for me as I live in Namibia. My subscription here was a gift, and debit cards are hard to use for international online purchases.
But… I have a Japanese student who is going to Japan next month, so I am going to ask him to buy me some hard copies of books! Can you suggest some that will be read by the group in the next few months?

:thinking: I only have debit cards. Might’ve been lucky until now, I guess.

The next book is going to be チーズスイートホーム, but the books after that aren’t decided yet.

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It’s not about being lucky, it all depends on your bank. In my country one year ago, no bank offered buying online using depit cards and we had to get a Visa. But now the government enforced them to support it, if that didn’t happen I might be using an Anki deck instead of wanikani

I guess that makes sense. :thinking:
At least where I’m from, I think (almost) every bank is either Visa or Mastercard.

It’s still down to the bank, at least in the US. My bank debit card is a Visa, but they don’t allow international charges with it. When I buy things overseas, I have to use a credit card that does allow international charges.