Advanced Japanese Book Club // Now reading: 四畳半神話大系 (The Tatami Galaxy)・Next: Nausicaä・Next: マリアビートル

@Redglare Thanks for finding the last (I hope :sweat_smile:) broken link :slight_smile:

I somehow produced this wrong link at some point and then diligently copied it everywhere :woman_facepalming:

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My friend is just starting to read Haruki Murakami’s ノルウェイの森
… do you have any tips or Vocabulary list?

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jpdb has a full vocabulary list (and also an SRS if they need it): Norway no Mori – Prebuilt decks – jpdb

Other than that, most Murakami books are not very difficult (this one here has difficulty level 6/10, which is calculated from the text, so quite reliable). Good luck to your friend!

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Thank you, YOU ARE THE BEST!!
I searched ankiweb and came up with empty hands

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Just a quick note to let you know that we are looking for nominations!

The next poll will start on Sept 20th (or so), so please propose your books before that date :blush:

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砂漠 (さばく a campus life) // moved from intermediate

Author: 伊坂 幸太郎 | Kōtarō Isaka
Page count: 512
Natively: His other books are L30-L37

Summary

Japanese

この一冊で世界が変わる、かもしれない。仙台市の大学に進学した春、なにごとにもさめた青年の北村は四人の学生と知り合った。少し軽薄な鳥井、不思議な力が使える南、とびきり美人の東堂、極端に熱くまっすぐな西嶋。麻雀に勤(いそ)しみ合コンに励み、犯罪者だって追いかける。一瞬で過ぎる日常は、光と痛みと、小さな奇跡で出来ていた――。明日の自分が愛おしくなる、一生モノの物語。限定の書き下ろしあとがき収録。 (Source: BookWalker)

English

Google Translate:
This book might change the world. In the spring when he entered a university in Sendai City, Kitamura, a young man who had calmed down, met four students. Torii who is a little frivolous, Minami who can use mysterious powers, Toudou who is extremely beautiful, and Nishijima who is extremely hot and straightforward. He devotes himself to mahjong, works hard at joint parties, and chases even criminals. Everyday life that passed by in an instant was made up of light, pain, and small miracles. A lifelong story that will make you love yourself tomorrow. Includes a limited edition postscript.

Availability

Amazon including Kindle and Audible versions | Audiobooks | BookWalker

Personal Opinion

Looks interesting! I am not a very opinionated person (:

Pros and Cons for the Book Club

Pros

  • Audiobooks available
  • Relatively easy to read among this author’s work

Cons

  • Probably a bit long
  • Not as much a social commentary as his other work?

Pictures

Pages 1-49 on BookWalker 試し読み

Difficulty Poll

How much effort would you need to read this book?

  • No effort at all
  • Minimal effort
  • Moderate effort
  • Significant effort
  • So much effort my head might explode
  • I don’t know

0 voters

3 Likes

You know I looked at this book ages ago and the summary didn’t really draw me in so I passed on it. Looking at the other books the author has written though, several are on my wish list. :thinking: That’s promising!

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The POLL is upon us!

Have a look at the List of Proposed Books section in the first post for details on each book. Every book has a difficulty associated with it (based on the book club members’ votes, thus subjective) out of 5, where 1 means “no effort at all” and 5 means “so much effort my head might explode”. The difficulty is annotated in the poll in square brackets after the book’s name.

Do not rely solely on difficulty when making a choice. Please have a look at the nomination posts and text samples if you haven’t already.

Expected reading pace: The proposals fall into two categories, Fast and Hard. We aim to read fast books at 30-50 pages per week and hard books at ~15 pages per week (that number might vary a bit throughout, depending on the book’s breaks and chapters). For manga, depending on difficulty and chapter length, we will probably read one to several chapters per week. The pick’s exact reading schedule will be negotiated before the book club kicks off.

Start of Book Club: We will start the next book on Nov 5th (after a one-week break).

Poll duration: The poll will be closed within a week (and most likely before that), whenever it looks like voting has dried up. You can choose up to 5 options.

  • Fast: 86―エイティシックス― [2.7]
  • Fast: クォンタムデビルサーガ アバタールチューナーⅠ [3.13]
  • Fast: マスカレード・ホテル [1.89]
  • Fast: 風の谷のナウシカ [3.13]
  • Fast: 化物語(上) [2.67]
  • Fast: 虐殺器官 - Genocidal Organ [3]
  • Fast: ユージニア [2.2]
  • Fast: 蛇にピアス [2.29]
  • Fast: 感応グラン=ギニョル [3]
  • Fast: 村上海賊の娘 [2.75]
  • Fast: 砂漠 (さばく a campus life) [2.33]
  • Hard: 檸檬 [3.64]
  • Hard: 風立ちぬ [3]
  • Hard: 午後の曳航 [3]
  • Hard: 文字渦 [3.88]

0 voters

3 Likes

I’ll likely be without internet for the next several months, but I’ll read with the club in spirit!

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:exploding_head: Going to outer space or something? :thinking:

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Living on a boat actually. There’s talk of satellite internet but I don’t have high hopes. With no particular schedule I’ll probably read Eugenia, 1Q84 and the next S+M among others while I’m away.

11 Likes

Where on a boat. And why?

If you don’t mind me asking.

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Voting has dried up, and we have a new winner:

ユージニア

:tada:

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Here is the home thread for our newest pick:

Please have a look at my schedule proposal and add your feedback!

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To all mystery fans who enjoy juggling multiple books at once: Why not come over to Natively and vote for the Mystery Novel Book Club’s next pick? Poll closes on October 17th, and reading starts on Halloween :jack_o_lantern: , barely a week before the ABC starts reading ユージニア!

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Quick heads up to everybody who is planning to nominate something here: Now would be a good time :grin: I’m planning to run the next poll from Dec 19th, and currently there are 6 seats available for proposals :+1: See you there!

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四畳半神話大系 (The Tatami Galaxy)

Author:森見 登美彦

Summary

Japanese

超高速で空転する、これが僕らの青春だ!『夜は短し歩けよ乙女』の森見登美彦が贈る必笑青春コメディ

私は冴えない大学3回生。バラ色のキャンパスライフを想像していたのに、現実はほど遠い。悪友の小津には振り回され、謎の自由人・樋口師匠には無理な要求をされ、孤高の乙女・明石さんとは、なかなかお近づきになれない。いっそのこと、ぴかぴかの1回生に戻って大学生活をやり直したい! さ迷い込んだ4つの並行世界で繰り広げられる、滅法おかしくて、ちょっぴりほろ苦い青春ストーリー。

English

Spinning at super-speed, this is our youth! A hilarious coming-of-age comedy from Tomihiko Morimi of The Night Is Short, Walk On Girl.

I’m a dull third-year university student. I imagined a rosy campus life, but reality is far from it. I’m pushed around by my bad friend Ozu, the mysterious free spirit Master Higuchi makes unreasonable demands, and I can’t seem to get close to the solitary maiden Akashi-san. I just want to go back to being a spick and span first year student and start my university life all over again! A funny and slightly bittersweet coming-of-age story that unfolds in four parallel worlds in which the characters have wandered.

Translated with DeepL Translate: The world's most accurate translator (free version)

Length: 405
Category: Dark comedy, Psychological, Romantic comedy (according to Wikipedia)

Availability

Amazon Paperback
Amazon ebook
Bookwalker

Personal Opinion

I watched a few episodes of The Tatami Galaxy anime and was impressed by both the art style (unrelated to the book) and the plot. Apparently it’s about a university student who tries and fails to live the university life of his dreams, then each episode (and I assume chapter) he starts afresh as if the previous chapter hadn’t happened, only to fail again in new ways. As soon as I found out the anime was adapted from a book I decided to get it, and postpone watching the rest of the anime until I’ve read the book.
It’s graded Level 43 on Natively, but I’m not sure why.

Pros and Cons for the Book Club

Pros

  • It’s supposed to be funny yet deep
  • About university life
  • Has a very cool anime based on it

Cons

  • Might feel repetitive? The same period is repeated each chapter, but the events are different each time.
  • About university life
  • Looking at some reviews, they mention “modern” language. I’m guessing there may be specialized vocabulary of this particular age/social group that might pose some difficulties. Maybe the Natively level has to do with that.

Preview

Please refer to the Bookwalker 試し読み where you can read quite a few pages.

Difficulty Poll

How much effort would you need to read this book?

  • No effort at all
  • Minimal effort
  • Moderate effort
  • Significant effort
  • So much effort my head might explode
  • I don’t know

0 voters

6 Likes

Wow, that was quick! :joy_cat: Thank you, much appreciated!

2 Likes

Skimming the preview the vocab spread is big and it kinda of jumps from idea to idea and isn’t straightforward narration. I’m guessing the combo of those two pushed the ranking up, but many of the books it’s being compared to I haven’t read so not much more insight than that.

5 Likes

この本を盗む者は

深緑 野分:

Summary

Japanese

書物の蒐集家を曾祖父に持つ高校生の深冬。父は巨大な書庫「御倉館」の管理人を務めるが、深冬は本が好きではない。ある日、御倉館から蔵書が盗まれ、深雪は残されたメッセージを目にする。“この本を盗む者は、魔術的現実主義の旗に追われる”本の呪いが発動し、街は物語の世界に姿を変えていく。泥棒を捕まえない限り元に戻らないと知った深冬は、様々な本の世界を冒険していく。やがて彼女自身にも変化が訪れて―。

English

Fukafuyu is a high school student whose great-grandfather is a collector of books. His father is the caretaker of the Mikura-kan, a huge library, but Fukayuki does not like books. One day, a book is stolen from the Mikura-kan, and Fukayuki sees a message left behind. The book’s curse is activated and the town is transformed into a world of stories. When Fuyuki learns that the curse cannot be undone unless the thief is caught, she ventures out into the various worlds of the book. Eventually, she herself begins to change…

(from DeepL)

Length: 344
Category: Fantasy

Availability

Amazon JP
Bookwalker

Personal Opinion

This has been on my 積読 pile for awhile and I should probably get to it. If I’m being perfectly honest the summary reminds me of The Pagemaster :joy: I should call out that it has a high rating on Natively (46), but only one grader thus far and a ‘tentative’ grade at that, so it’s still in flux. Looking at the preview (and only the preview) I wouldn’t worry about it being over the level comfortable for the readers in this book club

Pros and Cons for the Book Club

Pros

  • Seems unlikely to have anything gory or sexual
  • Less than 400 pages

Cons

  • Nothing springs to mind

Preview

Please use the Amazon or Bookwalker links above to see previews of the book

Difficulty Poll

How much effort would you need to read this book?

  • No effort at all
  • Minimal effort
  • Moderate effort
  • Significant effort
  • So much effort my head might explode
  • I don’t know

0 voters

8 Likes