Beginner Japanese Book Club // Now Reading: 神さまがまちガえる

Do you have the original version (2 volumes of Aqua and 12 volumes of Aria) or the republished 完全版 version (7 double size volumes)?

The original, individual volumes. I wasn’t aware of the republished version until seeing your post.

Here’s a description of the 完全版 version on reddit:

And some images linked to in that reddit post (click for more):

How does it seem to compare based on the description and images?

The paper stock in the originals isn’t bad at all. It’s not quite as high-quality as what we get in English at the top end (but better than most), but it’s a significant step above most manga paper, thicker and brighter, with minimal see-through to the backside of a page when under a bright lightsource (though my copies weren’t yellowed at all prior to shipping, so other used copies may differ).

Having not read it (though I have seen all of the anime), I don’t know where all of the two-page spreads fall and I don’t want to search through all books for fear of spoilers, though of those I’ve found, a few do suffer from an assumption that they’re on a flat canvas, putting the subject into the middle not in such a way that it gets divided across both pages, but where it’s really deep into the valley with the spine and doesn’t get the lighting and focus intended. The contrast and detailing otherwise seems fine. It looks like it was drawn for the page-size at which it was printed.

I’m kinda tempted to pick up the Masterpiece versions myself now, since I love the art in the series, but the originals are already in a larger size (like Yotsuba, rather than the smaller shonen format). Having something bigger and heavier seems like it would be inconvenient for reading at a beginner’s speed, potentially speeding fatigue and shortening sessions.

Gotcha, thanks for the information. The content between the two versions should theoretically be the same, so people could probably get either version and any vocab list we make would just have two page numbers for the vocab. It’s a slight inconvenience with Kiki, but not a big deal. With that said, if this manga was selected I’d like to encourage people to get the masterpiece version so we have an excuse to read both volumes of Aqua together.

One last question. The last image in the link I posted shows the front cover not being fully glued, which I’ve seen in other Japanese books. Does your copy have that problem too?

Nope, the construction quality seems pretty solid across all volumes to me. Though, related to that, I forgot to mention that the originals only have one two-sided coloured page per book. So the Masterpiece edition seems like it would double that.

Also, every page is numbered (except for titlecards and cases where the art goes for a cinematic shot), unlike Yotsuba where there were sometimes only five page-numbers in an entire chapter.

And the furi and general font are also very clear at the original size. Having them be a bit bigger would no doubt help with deconstructing things into radicals, but I have zero complaints about readability.

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Does anyone have any other suggestions for the next book? I’m wondering if we should start the poll soon so that people have enough time to buy whatever we pick.


I did actually try and find something else to suggest. I wen to the Cultural Centre and borrowed a copy of the first ChibiMarukochan book to introduce. However I really like the sound of the Aria/Aqua books you’ve mentioned, so maybe I’ll leave Chibi for another time.

I also borrowed some graded readers, but they seem a little bit worthy (ie potentially dull)
I might try and scan a few pages of them in a separate thread just for the benefit of anyone considering that sort of resource but wanting to see what they will get before they order.

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I think there has been enough time for suggestions. What hasn’t been suggested yet can wait till next time =)
It’s better to start the poll and get a final vote ahead of time so we all get a chance to find a copy in time =^_^=


Yes please, I want to join this next round

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So should we just make a poll with all the past nominees (other than Yotsubato and Kiki), plus the new suggestions?

Here were my two suggestions:

Gochuumon wa Usagi desu ka

Aria The Masterpiece (first volume is really both volumes of Aqua)

Well, how were the last two books decided? We should use the same precedure as everytime, James

Yeah, it was decided by poll.

@jprspereira Do you want to make the poll since you created the thread and the previous poll? Or should I just do it? I don’t mind doing it if you want me too.

I’d also advocate for taking a 2-6 week break after Kiki. For me at least, reading Kiki every week has been draining, and I need a break before starting the next book.


I’d like to ask you to do it because you’ve been active in the book club and you know how things are working better than I do. Me on the other hand have barely participated… :eyes:

I do promise that I’ll be active in the next book that ends up being chosen. I’m going to go all in on reading.

Yeah, this will be good for me, since I have yet to catch up on the previous books.

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well, since we all need some time to actually order the book, a 2-6 week break isn’t bad XD untracked deliveries from japan can easily take 6 weeks to arrive.

or they arrive never :confused: happened to me once


Poll for the Third Book

Alright, time for the next poll since Kiki’s Delivery Service will be done on June 9th. I’m including all of the previous nominees (other than Yotsubato and Kiki’s Delivery Service), plus the new nominees. See the first post for a link to the pitches for each book, and links for buying them on Amazon.

Vote for as many entries as you want. I’ll keep the poll open for two weeks (until May 6th) unless there are objections to that time frame.

  • しろくまカフェ (Manga)
  • 干物妹! うまるちゃん - Himouto! Umaruchan (Manga)
  • ダース・ヴェイダーとプリンセス・レイア (Manga)
  • 徒然チルドレン - Tsuredure Children (Manga)
  • チーズスイートホーム (Manga)
  • ヒカルの碁 (Manga)
  • ホリミヤ (Manga)
  • Barレモン・ハート (Manga)
  • ご注文はうさぎですか?- Is the Order a Rabbit? (Manga)
  • ARIA 完全版 (Aria The Masterpiece / Aqua) (Manga)
  • メアリと魔女の花 - Mary and the Witch’s Flower (Book)
  • マジック・ツリーハウス第1巻恐竜の谷の大冒険 (Book)
  • こわくてたのしいおばけの話90 (Book)
  • 絶叫学級 - Scary Lessons (Book)
  • 時をかける少女 - The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (Book)
  • キッチン (Book)

0 voters


I edited the first wiki post to link to the new poll, but for some reason I can’t change the title of the thread. Please update it to indicate that the poll for choosing the new book is open.

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Done. Are you guys still finishing reading 魔女の宅急便 or can I remove it from the title?

We still have a few chapters left (it’ll be done June 9th), but I don’t care if you remove it from the title, personally.

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I’ll let it stay then :slight_smile: Who knows if I’m still able to catch you guys up for that one.

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