Author Recommendations? Drop Your Bookmeter Author Graph!

I use bookmeter for both books and manga and have only read one long book series, so mine is very biased towards mangaka! And then it’s usually just one series.

Literally the only author on that graph with more than one series I’ve read is 志村貴子, who does primarily LGBT themed manga. I’ve read her for 放浪息子 (transgender theme) and おとなになっても (adult yuri theme). I will eventually read 青い花 (high school yuri theme) as well.

The only non-manga author on this list is 香月美夜, for 本好きの下剋上. I’m up to 16 for that series right now, but by the time I finish the series it will be in the mid 30s.

The only other author I’d call out since I’ve read more than one book/series by her is 上橋菜穂子. I read the first two books of 獣の奏者 as well as 狐笛のかなた. Her works are generally young adult, but can have dense political aspects as well, which is why I haven’t read more yet. Eventually I’d like to read the next two books in the 獣の奏者 series as well as her more recent series 香君.

I can certainly give more individual book recommendations, but if you’re looking for authors I can’t really help much.


Do you mean “literature” in the “classic novels” sense, or just books of any description?

(Sadly booklog doesn’t do graphs, but I might try to do something with its export-to-csv tomorrow.)


Yes, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be fiction (I’ve got some books on Japanese history and geography, and I’ll read anything as long as it is interesting). I’m not that interested in light novels or manga for the time being.


I don’t have a bookmeter, but I probably started with Haruki Murakami.

I also like Yukio Mushima, and read one short story by Yasunari Kawabata if I’m not mistaken.

If you count liking an author because of an adaptation of their work, then I like Osamu Dazai because of the No Longer Human manga.


They have books by both at a nearby university library so I’ll choose one from each and add to the pile!



This is a bit off though because some books have the author listed with a space between sur- and given name and some don’t (and you can see ワザワキリ’s on there twice because of it). Really, my top ten should be:

古舘春一 (35)
あずまきよひこ (15)
秀良子 (11)
ワザワキリ (10)
おおのこうすけ (9)
那多ここね (4)
もふもふ枝子 (3)
ひのた (3)
古矢渚 (3)
遠藤達哉 (3)

I also mostly read manga (a lot of BL, sports, and slice of life, though I’ve got some other stuff here and there), and a fair few of them are multi-volume series—in fact, the only of these authors I’ve read more than one story from are 秀良子, もふもふ枝子, and 古矢渚. I do really love 秀良子 though, both their stories and art. I have three of their original works (all single-volume), and several of their よつばと! DJs (8 a series, 1 stand-alone).

壁井ユカコ’s LN series 2.43 清陰高校男子バレー部 was the first thing I started reading in Japanese, though I still haven’t gotten very far in it, though I love it a lot. I just read too slow to finish anything before my brain goes, “Ooh, ooh! Let’s read this one next!” because there is so much I wanna read and I have ADHD. (I have. nine books started currently. And that’s just in JP. It’s probably more than a dozen counting the ENG ones too.) I really wanna read 新海誠, as well as probably all of あさのあつこ’s baseball novels. I have to mentally beat myself back with a stick from just going ahead and buying all of them when I am so dang slow at reading novels and I have a bunch of unread ones already lol

I still don’t really understand the “light novel” vs “novel” distinction, so I’m not sure how many of the novels I wanna read are “actual” novels vs LNs, but I do have a handful of 海王社文庫 classics that come with a 朗読 CD where a popular seiyuu reads an excerpt, including Dazai’s 走れメロス and Souseki’s 吾輩は猫である. Those are lower priority right now though because the fact that they’re older intimidates me a lil tbh. I feel like I should up my grammar level before trying. And also maybe finish at least one of those non-book-club novels I’ve got started.


Actual Literature I’ve read and would recommend (some of this I copy-and-paste from a similar recent thread):

雪国 by Kawabata. Genuine Nobel-prize-approved capital-L literature. Has the benefit of being short if you don’t get on with it. I found it the kind of dense text that benefited from careful slow reading. Oh, and I’ve read 名人, which is his novelized account of a real-life game of Go between two top-level players (which I recommend to the sort of people who think “novel of a single game of Go” sounds interesting :-))

キッチン by Banana Yoshimoto (and a few others by her). Easy to read, modern setting, some critics don’t think this counts as real lit. This is actually one of the first books I read in Japanese.

Natsume Soseki: 吾輩は猫である is a combination of conversations between university graduates showing off, a pompous cat pointing out human folly, and the occasional cat slapstick. I did like it but it is a very difficult read because of its vocab and grammar. I also liked 三四郎, which is a much easier text to read, largely because the narrator is not being super-stuck-up and because only some of the dialogue is bored university grads showing off to each other. It’s basically a coming-of-age story where 三四郎 arrives in Tokyo in the early 1900s to study at university and finds city life a massive culture shock compared to rural Kyuushuu. I liked it because I find that period of history interesting and because the book (like 吾輩は猫である) includes various musings on modernity and the East-vs-West clash that had been playing out in Japan since the start of the Meiji era.

Tanizaki: I have read 細雪, which is about a wealthy Osaka family just before WW2, mostly dealing with their attempts to arrange a marriage for one of the sisters. I would classify this as “if you enjoy classic literature you might like this”, i.e. if you pick your reading for action-packed plot or humour there’s not a lot of either on offer. I also definitely liked a volume of his non-fiction essays collected in a book under the title 陰翳礼讃 (which is the title of the famous “In Praise of Shadows” essay). Get a collection which includes 厠のいろいろ, where Tanizaki muses about toilets through history and nominates his favourite loo experience ever.

I have not read any Mishima Yukio, on a point of principle (I disagree with his politics); his stuff doesn’t sound like what I’d like to read anyway.


My understanding is that it’s primarily a target demographic thing, but I just have an image in my mind of light novels being anime in novel form and I’m trying to avoid that for personal reasons (for the time being).


They actually have this one at the library I usually borrow from, and I do prefer the smaller books at the moment since I’m trying to read a little bit of everything. I’ll go pick it up after new years.


I can also do recs for detective fiction or historical fiction authors if you like – I don’t think of those as literature, but they’re definitely not light novels.

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Drop some names and I’ll take a look! :books:

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This is my top 10, but it of course suffers from the Bookmeter issue of not handling author names well. You’ll note I read 江戸川乱歩 3 times and 江戸川 乱歩 three times :upside_down_face:
According to Natively I’m currently at 75 unique authors - a decent chunk of those though short stories, I bet. :joy:

For straight up literature I like 太宰, but mostly I enjoy pulpy crime novels, hence the above (my 推し), 赤川次郎, and 知念実希人.

I suppose if you want more serious, 横山秀夫 (having a reading club for 半落ち in the new year btw…), 奥田陸 (of the current ユージニア club), and 宮部みゆき (will have a reading club for レベル7 on the Natively forums in ~February) are good authors to look into. If you like crime anyways. It’s my primary genre.


There will be exceptions of course, but on the whole I think that’s pretty accurate. I’m not hugely into light novels, but the two series I’ve enjoyed so far still feel very much like anime even if they are better written and more interesting than the average light novel.


@enbyboiwonder and @pocketcat that happened to me in the past, and I found you can just go to the relevant book page and edit the author name to make it unified. The graph will automatically fix itself.

Here’s my all time graph: (available through the bookmeter app, not sure about the web interface)

It’s 100% light novels, but that’s the nature of the genre: there are many books per series.


I wonder what series くまなの wrote. :rofl:


Obviously, くま クマ 熊 ベアー. :joy:

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Oh dear, I have one book by him on my shelf that I’ve already entered under “reading” on bookmeter and the author name shows as 江戸川乱歩. I might have to avoid versions that say 江戸川 乱歩 in the future or I just know it will annoy me to no end :sob: :rofl:

Ohh, I had no idea! This is gonna save me some frustration in the future.


Here’s my graph, which it took me way too much time faffing about in Google Sheets with the exported CSV file to produce…

First place goes to 赤川次郎, who is very easy to read – if you want a good starting read but want to avoid LNs then try him. He’s written hundreds of books, mostly adventure/mystery/thriller-ish type stuff.

Second is 支倉凍砂, which is all the Spice & Wolf LNs.

Third is 小路幸也, largely for the Tokyo Bandwagon novel series. I don’t think I’d count these as LNs, personally. They’re more “book version of TV daytime soap opera” than “book version of anime”, at any rate.

Fourth is 宮部みゆき, another prolific author of mystery/thriller type books; she’s also done some historical fiction that I’ve enjoyed.

Fifth is 谷川流, for the Haruhi LNs.

Sixth is 藤沢周平, my favourite historical novel author.

Seventh, 松本清張, who wrote detective fiction and pioneered a more ‘social realist’ strand of Japanese detective fiction in the 1950s, where criminals committed murder for more realistic reasons often linked into wider social issues.

Eighth is 三上延, for the ビブリア古書堂 LN series.

After that we get into “authors I’ve read fewer than 10 books by”, so I’ll stop the breakdown there. You can poke around my booklog bookshelf if you want to see what the others are…


I know they have “ICO 霧の城” by her at the library. I want to read it because its based on the game Team ICO made before Shadow of the Colossus (which was one of my favorites on ps2).

This does sound interesting but they don’t have any of his books at the library. Is there a particular book that you would recommend? I might get it on amazon eventually.


Historical novel author suggestions:

藤沢周平 is, as mentioned, my personal favourite. He likes to write stories about low-ranking samurai who have to deal with situations where they’re constrained by their societal rules, their sense of duty, etc; usually the settings and plots are internal to some small clan (e.g. somebody gets caught up in internal clan political faction struggles), and the endings are often bittersweet. There are both short stories and novels. I would suggest starting where I did, with 用心棒日月抄, which is about a samurai who falls out with his clan and has to scrape a living doing various “bodyguarding” jobs in Edo while he tries to search for evidence that could clear his name. But I haven’t read anything by the author I didn’t like.

赤川次郎 mostly writes mystery/adventure stuff, but his one historical series, 鼠, is a fun easy entry to reading historical novels for people who worry they might be a bit of a slog to read. The books are all short stories featuring a robin-hood style “rob the rich and help the poor” Edo thief.

葉室麟 is good too. His books seem to have a romance-ish theme or tinge to them (though my sample size is only three). I have put one of his books into the nominations for the Advanced Book Club (voting next week, I think).

宮部みゆき is another mostly-mystery-fiction author who’s dipped a toe into the historical fiction genre, and who I found a straightforward read.

京極夏彦 and more specifically his 巷説百物語 series. (He’s also done some crime fiction.)

Crime recommendations:

Anybody listed above as also doing crime/mystery :slight_smile:

松本清張 I talked about above. I think 点と線 is one of the often-recommended famous books, but I vaguely recall it being a bit lighter on the social issues side of things and a bit more police-procedural. ゼロの焦点 is another I liked; it’s set in post-WW2 occupied Japan. (松本 also wrote historical fiction but I have found it rather dull and hard to read compared to his crime novels.)

内田康夫 is another of those “wrote over a hundred books” prolific authors. Most of his feature amateur detective Asami Mitsuhiko. There’s often an element of travelogue to them, with the action in each book typically taking place in some different tourist region or remote location in Japan. I think I’d say I recommend these if you happen to like crime fiction anyway; I like them but I’m not sure they have enough to commend them to somebody who isn’t already a genre fan. As with all these “wrote a ton” authors, the advantage is that if you like the writing style then there’s a lot available to read.

貴志祐介-- author of 新世界より (SF, strongly recommended) but he seems to mostly write crime fiction. Modern settings, quite fond of locked room mysteries and other kinds of “how was it done?” puzzle-ish plots.

佐々木譲 does good police-procedurals; the ones I’ve read have tended to have a “police corruption” theme.

横溝正史 wrote in the 50s and 60s mostly; the settings are usually in that era. There’s a book club on the forum going through most of his novels.

江戸川乱歩 you already know about.