Absolute Beginners Book Club // Now Reading: Miss Shikimori is not just cute! // Next: Granny Girl Hinata chan!

Sorry if this question has already come up and been answered, but how challenging are the next books of Rental Brother? I’m interested in seeing how the rest of the story progresses and it doesn’t seem to be a nomination so I’m assuming it’s probably more difficult?

Oh, tell me about it. And the only difference between them is a single kanji somewhere in the middle of their titles.


They’re about the same as volume 1. The main “difficulty” is the introduction of a recurring character who speaks with a dialect in volume 2.

If there’s enough interest in continuing a series, it gets its own offshoot club, rather than a nomination.

I expect we’ll have more than enough people interested in continuing, especially with it being only four volumes.


Cool, I’d love to see it continued. Thanks!


Could someone with the right privileges update the group title to something like: SELECTING NEXT BOOK//Absolute Beginners Book Club//Currently Reading: Big Brother Rental


Hi all,

some time ago, I’ve nominated a book in the Beginner Book Club, but it doesn’t seem to be very popular there, plus it is really easy, and so I figured that maybe you guys would be interested in reading it here? (Note: I won’t be running the book here if it gets picked, but I’m sure you will find somebody who can take over.)

こぐまのクーク物語 春と夏 - Kuuku the Bear Cub’s Story, Spring and Summer

Summary (Japanese from Amazon, English is my own translation)


Kuuku and his animal friends grow up among lush nature. Kukki’s parents run a restaurant called “Forest’s Kitchen” where they prepare delicious meals. 8 emotionally moving stories. Recipes are included.



Personal Opinion

I have not read the book yet, but I noticed it on FloFlo because it has very few different words. It seems to be a cute children’s story. From peeking into it, I like the artwork as well.

Pros and Cons for the Book Club


  • Vocab list on FloFlo
  • Only 1230 different words according to FloFlo
  • It’s actually a book for very small children, so the language is easy, and the sentences are short.
  • 8 stories that are each 20 pages or less, and each page contains very little text only (see screenshots).
  • It seems to be a series, so we can continue with the next book(s) if people are interested.


  • Don’t rely too much on FloFlo’s word list as it may have misparses, e.g. it did not seem to be able to parse こぐま (bear cub)
  • As expected for a children’s book, there are not too many kanji.
  • The story is probably not too deep :wink:


First Three Pages of Chapter One

Additional Pages

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


Wow, thank you for your willingness to run the book’s club! Appreciated :slight_smile:

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In case we do a poll and it wins and @_Marcus you can’t find the time yet to run the club, I’d be willing to do it. It looks like a cute and fun read and I already have it in my cart… probably going to buy it soon whether or not it gets picked by the ABBC because it’s on sale right now (the other books of that series too as it seems).


:eyes: :eyes:

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Someone has now started a book club for this one.


I just clicked on this manga because I thought it was the old man and a cat one. But turns out it’s a different manga but it looks cute, too! It’s called Oji-san loves cute things (おじさんはカワイイものがお好き)

and is about

a guy who’s 40 years old, an attractive office worker, admired by his colleagues but he has a secret: He is trying to hide from everyone that he loves cute things. But with his son going to his apartment, his secret is now in danger…

I’m thinking of nominating it! But I’m not sure if I should nominate it here or in the beginner book club. :thinking: It has mostly furigana and is not too text dense - not like furuba I’d say but definetly more text than big brother rental.

The first volume can be read for free at the moment on booklive.


I see what you mean. Definitely on the challenging side compared to previous ABBC picks. Particularly compared to what we are reading now.

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So I guess I take this one out of the nomination list then. It’s a shame as it looked a decent ABBC type read, although we’ve had it in our nomination list for sometime now without actually reading it.


Well, the ABBC’s always been less heavily reliant on polls than the other clubs anyway.

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Yes, and vocab wise it isn’t as easy, too, I think. Definetly more on the challening side but not much harder than the other manga proposals like Wanted or Dragon Ball I’d say. I think I will nominate it in the Beginner Book Club and not here, though.

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Okay, my copy has just arrived and my first reaction was one of disappointment. Looking at it online, the book looks great, but in real life, it is really small! I know there are terms for the sizes, but I don’t know them. It is smaller than Yotsuba for example, and exactly the same size as a Doraemon. And the font is small too of course (well, at least for my old eyes).

I clicked on “challenging” in the poll when I looked online, but now it is in my hands I would click on “very challenging” if that were an option. I’m more used to reading (a) easy manga and (b) easy books with much bigger typefaces, fewer words per page, and - dare I say it - a little more kanji. This would be quite a challenge.

However, it does look good. It’s a book I’d like to read. My worry is that I couldn’t read this at any pace faster than a page a day, and there are over 150 pages.

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I just checked the ebook. After reading your post, I was worried it’s only images and furigana as hard to read as in Furuba. But it’s not like that. It’s text that can be zoomed in and highlighted, only occasional illustrations are images.




Illustration + Text


Yes, it’s my paper copy that arrived today! I don’t have an e-reader. But glad to hear the e-version is good!

So what book is currently going on right now? :sweat_smile:

Big Brother Rental :slight_smile: (just so you know, it’s written in the title and the first post of this thread)