Intermediate Japanese Book Club // Now Reading: TUGUMI

Did you read it in original language? That’s really impressive! I have started a book of his short stories in Japanese, easier for me. Would you be interested in reading that?

I read several of his books in translation before.

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Okay, thanks. I’ll give that a shot. I already own a physical copy of 時をかける少女, but the kindle version is cheap right now, so maybe I’ll get that too so I can directly compare them.

Now to find a random address to use from Google Maps. :grin:


The Kawabata was interesting but the vocabulary was way above my level.:neutral_face:

I actually think that sounds very reasonable. That way, it might also be easier for people like me wanting to move from the beginners book club to something more challenging without having to stop in the middle of a book (or manga in this case).

That sounds good to me. thank you so much for organising this for us as well. I’ve seen the film and am really excited to read the book. In fact, I might order it already.

Also I think the flexible pacing that has been discussed sounds awesome. That way, it’s possible to gage the difficulty level and sensible pace for all of the reader for each book specifically. Should be good.


Just know that the film is very loosely based on the book. It will have different characters and (I assume) a largely different story.

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just gonna leave this here


I did, but I wouldn’t call it impressive, I guess? I picked the book a bit at random, and decided to read it as practice for the N1. It felt much easier than expected, mostly thanks to his writing style, I think. I have to admit that I was exhilarated when I could just read the first page and understand it. Kind of “holly cow, I’m doing it”
I have come across much harder stuff since then, though (e.g. 図書館の魔女 with its bs words that are supposed to be mimic characters talking in latin). So not quite there yet, I guess, but I’m working on it.

Hm, it depends. I’ve had both good (秋の牢獄) and really bad (red nightmares) experiences with short stories in the recent past. If it’s picked by one of the book clubs, sure.

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I just wanted to mention that some paces aren’t meant for everyone. Like now I can read most volume of manga within a week so just 10 or even 25 would feel painfully slow for me. Since I have little experience with novels I might need a slower pace at the beginning before I get used to things and can start going faster, and it depends from novel to novel as well. Here’s the first pages of the novelization of “Your Name” and “Accel World” for example.

Your Name

Accel World

As you can see Your Name is clearly much easier than Accel World so the pace would obviously be much faster. I’m not sure what could really be done about this since you can’t accommodate everyone so some people wanting to join book clubs might not bother because they’d feel left out.


You know maybe if we can find a book at the right level, we should try 多読 rules.

Instead of slugging through the book and stoping to look up words, we just skip them. And instead of deciding on how many pages to read, we’ll decide on how many minutes to read(per day or week). That way, everyone should approximately be on the same page since we’re skipping words we don’t know. It might take some trial and error, but just to be definitive we’ll approximate the average reading speed and have certain dates that you should have made it to whichever page/chapter. We could even revive the discord or hangouts and have people read together every day or week and have different channels for different time zones.

And then maybe every week after you’ve completed your tadoku exercise, you can then go back and re-read to look up words you didn’t understand. Maybe this can be done as a group on voice chat to make that process faster since you’re already spending a certain amount of time on 多読.

This method would work best if you know most of the vocab I think you have to know about 80-95%(dont quote me) for it to be effective. So we should also be using that vocab site by @Raionus, (i forgot the name) So maybe spend 10-15 minutes on vocab learning, and then 15-20 minutes on tadoku reading.

This way, we can keep people reading and learning. They won’t go as slow and we should generally be able to keep up with each other by spending the same amount of time reading. People should be less likely to fall behind, and less likely to give up. 30 minutes on reading every day or every other day is a lot more solid than reading 10 pages a week because you don’t know how long those ten pages will take, and saving the searching of vocabulary until after the fact will also speed up the progression of completing the book.

What do you guys think?

ALso the official tadoku rules are:

  1. Read easy books.
  2. Don’t use your dictionary.
  3. Skip over difficult words, phrases and passages.
  4. When the going gets tough, quit the book and pick up another.

For rule number one, we’ll say books within or right above our level, and for 4 maybe if the whole group decides a book is boring we’ll collectively vote to impeach it. If you’re in the minority, then either ganbarimasu, or just sit out for the next book. And for 3 and 2, we’ll do a first run following them, and then re-read it again if you have time and feel like it.


It’s :ok_hand:

It seems like there’s a really long period where people are just waiting for other people to get the book delivered to them. If you were to use Floflo consistently during that period then that would probably help a lot as far as the 多読 aspect of the plan is concerned. Like, just learn as much as you can during the waiting period and then let loose once the book club starts or something.


I have read a couple of pages of Your Name, and it’s totally doable. It’s obviously also easier since I have seen the movie and therefore am already familiar with the plot.

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Right, the 10 and 25 numbers given were referring to novels. That would be incredibly slow for most manga. Because novels are generally much denser than manga, it can easily take 5-10 times longer to read a page of a novel compared to a page of a manga (though obviously it still depends on the novel or manga).

Absolutely, but I think the issue was trying to find a pace that would facilitate more people being able to take part, as there are several people keen to move into reading books, but you don’t want to make it painfully slow for existing book club members.

Hence the suggestion of dynamically increasing the number of pages over time, which is exactly designed to help with that hump at the beginning, as you described.

I don’t know… won’t people’s different reading speeds have a huge effect on this? I’m not averse to trying it, but even if you did this in people’s native languages I think you’d end up with big disparities :thinking: I suppose also having targets on certain dates would balance it out.

I agree that pre-learning a load of the vocab would help a lot, and facilitate that approach.


@seanblue I finished reading 時をかける少女 (standard edition) a few days ago. It’s a good book, much better for beginners than 魔女の宅急便.

I think the idea of starting slow and then ramp up speed is really good, but I wanted to warn you that near the end of the story there is a section where one of the characters explains some “technical” stuff, which can be a bit tricky, so be careful not to ramp up pace too much when you get to that point.


I’d like to read 時をかける少女 too!

Is there anything I have to do? Or just showing my interest is enough? :sweat_smile:

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I think the big disparity in reading speeds comes from people being on different levels and thus reading slowly so as to understand every word, but if you keep it moving and stop trying to understand every little thing and just skip then you should be reading like you would in your native language. The are fast readers and there are slow readers but most people should fall under average speed, else it wouldn’t be called average speed right? I remember in class the teacher would tell you to read something and everyone would finish at around the same time, the average time. You might be a few minutes off but like 3 hours off would be ridiculous I think.

I don’t know that’s my reasoning, thats why I also said we need to do trial and error, but as long as you’re not meticously reading every bit I think most people should be around the same page but i guess you never know.

Maybe we could set different tiers of speed, but i think the most important thing is that you’re practicing and not so much worried about the goal of a certain amount of pages but the practice of reading for a certain amount of time consistently

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Thanks for letting me know. I think if it’s easier than 魔女の宅急便, along with Floflo being a thing now, we should be able to make it a success.

Thanks for the warning about the technical bits too. I can’t imagine we’d go faster than 15 pages a week even after ramping up. Do you know approximately how many pages you read a week on average?

Can someone who lives in Japan (@Naphthalene / @LucasDesu / whoever) help me get a valid address to use for my account? I tried grabbing something from Google Maps, but I don’t think it’s valid because it still won’t even show me the kindle version of 時をかける少女. When I go to the search page, it just says “This title is not available for your country.” :cry:

That’s strange that it would tell you that :thinking:
I never tried to buy anything on amazon JP from abroad, but isn’t the issue due to your IP? Maybe it would be ok through a proxy .
Otherwise, I don’t really know how it could tell that you don’t live at a given address…
Also, I can access the page you gave, but I’m not logged in, so the only thing it knows is my IP address.

Alright, I finally figured it out. Apparently you have to change your country from the devices section, not just in the main addresses. That was odd…

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