Intermediate Japanese Book Club(Looking for recommendations!)


I don’t really have an opinion about tadoku or not, but I don’t really see the difference between tadoku and set number of page per day from the current discussion.

As far as I understand, the idea was that everyone will read approximately at the same speed, and thus end up roughly at the same spot after say a couple of weeks. But you would have the exact same result if you said “read 5 pages a day”. People who don’t want to spend much time will do something like tadoku, others will go at their own pace, or floflo the whole thing… Some will binge, some will be regular.

I feel like “page per day” or “page per week” makes more sense (and is more flexible) :thinking:

Also, I agree with the fact that there’s no perfect method, and

We could add a quick paragraph in the introduction post summarizing those different approaches…


See, I already do this, but in small chunks. Sometimes a sentence, sometimes a paragraph, sometimes even a page. It depends on how much I immediately understand. I just wouldn’t want to feel obligated to do this for a whole chapter at a time.


Well, the difference is I wanted to switch to having people read for 30 minutes per day as that’s more manageable then having them read 3 pages per day, in the scenario that it takes them 3 hours per day. Because if 3 pages takes me 20 minutes, and sean 3 hours, then it’s not the same thing. 30 minutes or 5 pages. (just using rough examples and estimates, I have no idea how long it takes Sean)

The only way to insure that we are all reading at roughly the same pace, is if we all read in tadoku style. Because if we use the other method, and say okay everyone read 30 minutes a day lets say you read like 10 pages Naphtalene, because you’re not stopping, but shaun or icyfang reads like 2 pages, they’ll fall so far behind they’ll have to quit, or finish the book when we’re like 3 books past that.

I also think that if people give it a chance, they’ll find that they didn’t need to put so much energy into what they were doing in the first place. I think they might realize everything single detail isn’t even worth toiling over and that it’s more worthwhile to keep it moving and a lot of things will be picked up subconsciously and through other study times (grammar, wanikani time, ect.) You know in the same way some starts off wanikani writing each kanji 15 times when they review it, but by level 20 they pretty much stop this nonsense. It’s kind of like being level 30 and every kanji you come upon while reading that you don’t know, you stop and srs it and write it ten times to learn it. And yes you can do that, but you can also trust that you’ll learn it eventually through wanikani and you have to make use of your time and some sacrifice somewhere has to be made. Just try not to make that sacrifice you finishing a book at all.

Anyway the reason why I think 30 minutes a day will work better is that it’s a common habit building method and it’s worked for me and millions of other people. With art, exercise, codding. It can be hard to set out to draw the human body everyday, and in three hours you only have a head, or to read in Japanese we only have 3 pages done. But restricting yourself to 30 minutes not only takes away the excuse that you don’t have time today, but it also helps you to prioritize what you’re doing. In the first five minutes of drawing you need to lay out the figure, and with Japanese for about 30 minutes you should be making progress. And then with your more limited time, you’ll ask the most important questions of the general idea, rather than fretting over the nuance of one word.

Because obviously, people aren’t pacing themselves correctly if they keep falling behind and can’t keep up(guilty; only tadoku-like rules enable me to catch up when I do) And the only way to ensure that you’re not doing things like (i’ll just spend 7 hours on Saturday to catch up on those 6 pages. oh I missed the week end. Okay I’ll spend 6 hours next Saturday and 6 hours next Sunday to read those 12 pages) But instead oh I didn’t have time search up the unknown vocab, oh well I do that Saturday and maybe start doing that every day next week so that it doesn’t fall on Saturday. Except in the second situation, you don’t fall behind and quit.

Because honestly (and no offense at all this is just my opinion) taking 9 months and 6 months to read a book is getting ridiculous. We’ve read a few books already we need to pick up the pace. It’s like spending 6 years on wanikani, yeah you can take your time if you want, but you want to get to the goal before you’re a bag of bones right? Im sure if you were projected to finish wanikani in like 10 years you wouldn’t be like,well that’s just how long it takes me, you’d think I’m doing something wrong, I’m not reviewing enough everyday I need to pick up the pace. I guess that’s it. Even as club I"m kind of tired of spending 5 months on a book that should take 1 month to finish. We’ve been doing this for a year now and we’re not getting any faster.

But it seems zero people agree, it feels like every one thinks I’m like " If you don’t understand something skip it! skip the whole chapter if you please. The magic fairy gods will insert the knowledge whilst you sleep" And you guys think, nice try I’ll get zero learning experience from this exercise. When I feel like i’m saying “You should prioritize reading practice, and keeping a reasonable pace rather than stopping every 3 words to check a meaning that you could very well understand if you’d have kept reading. And if it was always your intention to toil at every word, just make sure you do that after your reading so that you don’t fall behind a quit.”
So I can’t think of a another method to prevent people from quitting, if they refuse to keep a steady pace because they feel they’re being dragged by a rope. So I guess we’ll just have to deal with 90% percent of people dropping out, or finishing the book a year later, whenever we do resume the club. I suppose it is inevitable.

Not a whole chapter, just 30 minutes. So where ever 30 minutes would take you, just to ensure you’re making good progress on reading everyday. But yeah never mind I suppose.


I wasn’t trying to say that tadoku is a bad idea, just that it’s orthogonal to reading a set amount of pages per day :sweat_smile:
If I understand correctly, your point was that we would read roughly at the same speed, so why not fix the mark to the approximate number of pages that corresponds to 20 min or something? (To account for potentially thicker than average places and the like). It feels like there would be less variability among people.

The habit building part is really important, as you said, and it’s a lot easier for people to fit a set amount of time in their daily life. But you can just tell people that the aim is to read said part in 30 min. If they finish early or have more time, great, they can just go through the vocab again, floflo, etc. The page number can also help them figure if they are getting behind before it’s irrecoverably late.

About the pace of the club, well, for instance, I read the last book in a month (while adding words I wanted to learn on floflo), and then went on and read Shinsekaiyori, plus some other random stuffs (mostly manga). That’s fine for me too.


I know you’re not dissing tadoku, but I’m sure the consensus is “It’s a nice idea just not very practical to enforce on people” But It was just a method I suggested for people who take 3 hours to finish a session. But if the slow readers don’t like it, then it’s really of no use.

It was always my intention to have some set of fixed pages because yes, not doing a check to see where everyoone is at can cause a disparity between reading places because everyone still doesn’t quite read at the same pace. I wanted to do some trial and error, maybe have everyone read a set number of pages with tadoku and report how long it took them, find the average, or go a bit slower than average to support slower people. Then we can set a page count that everyone can finish in approximately 30 minutes. To set this average while allowing people to search up every other word, would bring us to too slow a reading speed.


So about this whole tadoku thing. I actually think a good combination is best. I personally read tadoku style automatically, right until I get thrown off just that tiny bit too much and then I look it up. I personally can’t read looking up every single word or structure I don’t know, mainly because I sometimes still struggle to understand what exactly it is that is throwing me off.
So as a result, I may read half a page, or even a whole page and then kind of automatically reaevaluage how much of that I understood and without thinking, I either go back to look up a couple of key points or move on depending.
So I don’t personally have the ambition to understand everything to the T.

That being said, I think for the purposes of this book club, it probably makes more sense to leave it up to people.
So if say we stick to having people read a set number of pages a week, everyone can decide for themselves how they get to that point. But I feel like setting it tadoku style as a whole, to have people read a set amount of time every week, would create too much of a difference in how far along each reader is due to reading speed, as some people have said (even if you don’t look up words, speed is bound to differ).

The primary aim of the book club is (as I understand it) to have people read a book together so notes can be compared and questions answered, with everyone reading at the same speed (I mean that overall, not actual reading speed). So by letting everyone progress at their own rate (with only giving a time restraint) I feel would make it difficult to fulfil that.

I get that taking that long to read a book gets frustrating and that it may be the reason so many quit halfway through, but I think the varying speed that was discussed earlier might help alleviate this problem a bit.

As I said before, I personally read much closer to the tadoku method (which is why I struggle to participate in the threads so much), but I feel that as a group method it’s not the right thing.
However, I think that once there’s a basic language understanding and reading experience there, as a solo method, it works really well and yields much better results than most would expect.
But again, as a method to read as I group I don’t think it’s necessarily the most fitting one.

And, as so many have said before me, I’m not saying this to invalidate any other opinion or comment, this is just my own experience and take on it.


Yes I understand, but the primary aim of the book club gets undermined when everyone drops out and there’s hardly anyone left to participate. This is a very big problem since it’s happened with every book we’ve had. So to try the same thing while expecting different results is the definition of insanity.

We obviously need a change to prevent people from dropping out, or stop expecting them all to keep up.
Also I know everyone reads at different speeds naturally, but there has to be some average seed, so I suggested we do this:

Anyway I think we’d do good to address the dropping out problem, as it’s a very valid problem that doesn’t seem to be able to fix itself a year later. Does anyone have a suggestion to what we could do about it? Or is it something that can’t be fixed?


I agree 100% that it’s something that needs to be addressed.
However, I think first of all it’s natural that a lot of people drop out. I think the fact that it’s online (which obviously we can’t help) doesn’t help at all since there’s no one to remind you, no physical appointment or meeting that is being missed or anything the like.

From what I’ve been reading (which, granted, probably isn’t a lot) it feels like people are dropping out because they either can’t keep up and it gets too discouraging or the material is too difficult. Both of these are obviously problems that need to be judged by the person themselves and I think sometimes it’s hard to do so without actually reading.

So maybe like a grace period of a few weeks (or page count) for people to gage whether the book and reading speed works. And if the gap in reading speed is too big, maybe we could, I don’t know, have a group that progresses faster and one that is slower. I get that essentially if you’re slower you can just read at your own pace and then just go back into the threads to fill any holes, but maybe it would be quite nice to actually have a group that reads at a similar speed.

So I suppose what I’m getting at is like a trial period. That way the variable speed method that someone suggested (forgive me, I forgot who and where it was >///<) could work quite well as well.
But this is again dependant on readers being honest about what they can and can’t do.


This sounds like the ramp up approach that we’re going to try for 時をかける少女. Start at 5 pages a week for a couple weeks, then 10 a week. Then later have a vote to decide whether or not to increase to 15 a week.


Essentially, yes.
I think it might be worth considering making two schedules if the gap seems too big between the fastest and slowest readers (Just so slower readers have a schedule to follow as well, rather than being left to their own devices, which will hopefully prevent some people from quitting out of frustration or discouragement)


So, I gave light novels a try. I have to look up around 25-30 words in 2 pages. Now, I am perfectly fine with this, I don’t care if reading a single volume will take me months. But, I am wondering if this is the best use of my time. I’m in college right now, so I don’t really have any serious time constraints like mostly people do. But, still I was thinking if it’d be better to maybe use my time doing something else. The thing is I feel like this is essentially what’s left for me to do, increase my vocabulary. WK is making me learn Kanji and my grammar isn’t bad(using bunpro for that anyways), if I find something new, I just look it up, but it rarely happens.

Would love to know the thoughts of more experienced people.


Reading is the fastest way to improve one’s vocabulary. Looking up so many words can prove to wear and one’s nerves, but if you think you can do it, perhaps you should try using floflo as a supplement? For example, study the vocabulary in advance and then start reading. This will probably reduce the amount of time it takes to look things up while you’re reading.

I would recommend an easier book if you feel like all the time spent looking things up is wearing you down. What are you trying to read?


I don’t think floflo has this book. Also, it’s because I chose this book that I’ll be able to keep up with the slow pace. If it’s some other book, I might get bored. Also, I don’t think I’ll burn out. - A Wanikani-friendly website for reading and vocabulary

I’m pretty sure @Raionus takes suggestions for the floflo patreon(but I don’t think you have to be a patreon just to suggest a book) polls(about what books to add) in case you want it to have a chance at being added at some point.


Ah, that’s nice, when do the polls happen?


Every month.
Next one will be around the beginning of November, and finish around the 20th of November.
(So end of November is the earliest you can get it).


Just received my copy of 時をかける少女 :tada:

At the same time, I commanded more book. I do believe it’s cheaper that way.

I won’t get bored for some time.
What do you mean I still have 3 and a half book to read. More is better right?


I wonder if overlord will ever get on floflo :thinking:
(The only thing I know about it is that it didn’t get picked there :p)


Overlord is sooo good. I want to be able to almost fully understand japanese before reading it though. This one is more my reward than a practice. Btw when do you guys want to start to read 時かける少女。 just to be sure i’m not on another book by that time and to start in advance in case i’m busy. I believe it was in December right?


Not sure actually. Maybe mid November? It’s probably somewhere in the beginner book club thread.