Sorry guys for disappearing. O.o I had a series of life events collide quite terribly, so I haven’t had time to do much outside of work and sleep. Things are starting to get fixed, so hopefully I can get reading again by next week.
so i finally caught up, (yay!), but I’m a bit confused…
when did he decided to start a coffee shop? i read the last section pretty fast so i’m assuming i missed something, but it seemed to go from the sunglasses guy giving him a bunch of goodies, to him setting up the coffee shop with no prior notice
Agreed, it was a bit abrupt. I think it is supposed to happen over a space of time but is only a few paragraphs which is what made it feel so weird…he spends days making chairs and tables with the intent of pulling in people and trapping them in his stead…at least that is how I took it. Have you tried reading a second time? I am doing that right now, and it is SO much more fun and easier to understand the second time through.
I haven’t had time to do it for this story much so far, but, in general, this is both such a simple piece of advice, and so, so valuable. It can make such a huge difference. Anyone struggling, please try this.
(And it doesn’t mean read a sentence or two then read them again, it means read a chapter or large chunk and then go back again. So beneficial!)
As for the coffee shop. I was also a bit confused at first, but it seems to me his plan is like that mentioned above. I don’t know if that was ever explained explicitly, but that’s how I interpreted things. Also, as predicted, things are getting a bit easier to understand now that there are some other people for him to interact with.
yeah, i went back and read through the last page of the previous chapter a few times, and i reread the opening paragraphs of that chapter a couple times. It just felt like i was missing something in that seemingly abrupt transition.
by the way, when did i get a cake?
I love cake!
so i know that everybody is in different places right now, but i thought i would put up some discussion questions anyway. And to everyone who is a bit behind, it does get a bit easier so hang in there!
In Chapters 7 and 8 we meet a lot of new people, who was your favorite?
When our protagonist finally gets his chance to leave, (assuming he does get a chance), do you think he will take it?
As for me, I like the little boy he meets toward the end of chapter 8, the kid just has such a great attitude it made me smile
I think he will leave, despite all the great experiences he is having, he doesn’t really seem to recognize the positive aspects of his situation.
Phew, I’m finally caught up.
I like サングラス because he was very helpful and explained some things about センジさん.
As for that boy (I don’t think he is little boy, because he is 中学生, so he is at least 12), I was really annoyed by him and I think he deserved that treatment by other guys.
The interesting thing is that センジさん is described as a very nice man and he had a source of water and fruit that were supposed to keep him young, but when we first met him, he was a desperate old guy. What happened to him? And the way he left was quite scary.
Some people speculated that センジさん wasn’t actually a human, I wonder if that’s true.
I guess that makes me old, thinking that a middle-school kid is still a little kid. Oh well.
First of all, thank you for the discussion questions! Since we hadn’t arranged for anyone to lead discussion for this story the thread is kind of at a stand still. That combined with people being busy with the holidays and such leads to no activity. It seems that compared to the other club people are finding alternative ways to understand passages they are struggling with.
Anyway, of the people we meet in these chapters, I’m not really endeared to any of them in particular. It seems like many people already know about センジさん already. So instead I’m going to mention the character that made the biggest impression on me. I found the boy who was being bullied to be the most interesting because despite being picked on he found ways to seem like he was better than everyone else, even if it may not necessarily be the case.
I think the protagonist is finding that due to センジさん having a reputation with many of the regulars that frequent the house, finding a replacement is going to be difficult because they seem to be familiar with センジさん’s fate. In addition to this many who do happen upon the house accidentally don’t seem to see the protagonist for some reason. We haven’t gotten to the bottom of why this is the case. Hopefully the we learn about this too because I find this whole premise as perplexing as the protagonist.
This is partly true for me (I definitely feel more capable of looking up meanings and misunderstandings on my own than when we started this), but also, in all honesty, I’m just not as engaged with this story as I was with the first one. I really enjoyed speculating about the mysteries and character motivations in 秋の牢獄, but here…I can’t really say why (maybe because it’s harder and I’m missing too much?), but I just don’t care that much what happens.
As for the fact some people can and some people can’t see the protagonist - I feel like the fact that the bullied boy could see him but the bullies could not is probably significant. People who are kind of at the edge of society perhaps? The house seems to occupy a liminal space so it would make sense in that respect.
Yes, and it’s interesting that he never seems to think too much about the life he left behind. I feel like 8 or 9 chapters in and we still don’t know much about him other than what’s happened since the story began. Odd. I wonder if he also was on the edge of society and, therefore, attracted to the house?
interesting points! We know almost nothing of the life he left behind. He seems to want freedom more for the sake of freedom than because he really has something to get back to.
Alas, that’s the weak point of books that contain multiple stories. There’s no guarantee that one is going to like them all, right. I also agree that the previous story was more engaging than this one. Hopefully the last one will be better.
I was with you, until i read a little ahead. I think the next part is more interesting.
I have a few questions. They are not crucial to understanding, but I am just curious.
It’s not 捨てるな or 捨てないで. I haven’t seen that form before. Is there any nuance?
What’s this いうのもなんだけれど? Is it some kind of catchphrase, like なのです in the end of a phrase?
He uses it later on page 112
Also, what is なっちゃいない?
for the first one i think that is just a contraction of a command, i think it would be:
捨ているではない。as in don’t abandon them (here)!
Yeah, maybe I’m just overthinking those things. Thanks anyway.
yeah sorry i cant be more help, grammar is not my strong suit in any language
You know, I was thinking is the synopsis for 神家没落 accurate? It said the man walked away and trapped our protagonist, but I thought he like disappeared into thin air. Perhaps I read or remember is wrong?https://japaneselevelup.com/4-supernatural-stories-that-you-wouldnt-mind-experiencing-yourself/
I agree that I don’t like what he did, and I still see him as a bit of a selfish person. But I think I feel this way because I’m looking at it from the protagonist’s perspective. Because I’m also rooting for him to find someone else to take his place, which is just what the old man did. I think that if you could die in that place then maybe since he was old anyway he should have just died there. But if I remember/read correctly I don’t think you can even die in that place. And just existing in such a lonely boring place for eternity sounds like torture to me, I’m sure at such an old age he just wanted to move on to death. And I can kind of sympathize with him in that regard, and I’m sure if I were in Jiro or the oldman’s place, I would do the same thing and try to find another person to take my place. Would you not do the same @LucasDesu?
My favorite is the hunter. I thought it was funny when he first walked in he just seemed so confused, and I thought Jiro was being so creepy with his smiling. (it felt like and evil smile because I thought he was trying to trap the guy. I also thought it was funny that he was like, “Oh hey, come over here :D” to sunglasses and he was like " Oh I don’t think so, I already know the deal :/") And then after he sat down, and I believe he drank the tea, Like it was building up all the time he was there he was like " NO, uh-huh, I’ve been here over 10 years and there’s never been a cafe before. " And jiro is just still like And The hunter is like this scary, this scary and then he got up and ran out of the area. Whole thing was just really funny to me.
I don’t know… he seems to like the situation now…Little weirdo
I do not think that I can recognize the positive aspects either .
I am 20, I think he’s a little kid as well.
I was confused by the same things this little boy said as well. In fact I’m not really sure much of what he was talking about tbh lol. Can anyone explain these? I’m not sure I understand this kid correctly because I’m not sure why jiro thought of him as disgusting.
Any some of my own thoughts
The description of the house changing locations, was very similar to a nightmare I had when I was 12. I had just woken up from a night mare but for somereason I could not open my eyes, but I could feel that I was in bed. I couldn’t sit up either so I rolled to the floor. I thought that If I pushed on the floor I could sit my self up and open my eyes but when I pushed on the floor my hands went through air and then I was floating in the darkness. At point I figured I was still dreaming and normally I can wake myself up from nightmares but try and try as I might I could not wake up. I then concluded that I was dead and that there was nothing after life, or that I was hell and I started screaming and failing and but my movements were slugged like I was in water and I couldn’t hear myself screaming. Then I woke up. It was actually a pretty life changing dream for me because I really thought I was dead and I felt like I’d been given a second change in life and started to appreciate the things I had more. And that description really reminded me of the dream. So I was just pretty shocked to read something so similar.
And I really like this story, I’m just as curious as I was last time. I’ve just been lazily dragging my feet with it. bUt I’m caught up now. Just gotta read chapter 9 today or tomorrow. I spent three days writing this post lol.