Read before you.... read? Book... review?

This… doesn’t really feel worth putting in the Reading section, but I thought it was funny, so I figured I’d make you guys suffer with me.

Soooo I’ve been looking for LGBTQ+ books to read in both English and Japanese- especially free books, because I’m thrifty and there aren’t many options at my libraries. Naturally- and even though I damn well know better- I ended up in the free section of the BL kindle books on Amazon and downloaded some random book that sounded vaguely interesting. I think I read all of the first sentence of the summary and thought “good enough.” Stupidly, because I missed some major details- like it being a sci-fi novel.

The book in question is あなたが涙を見せない理由。The Reason You Don’t Show Tears. Appropriately melodramatic title for a BL novel. I’m currently 30% through this book (and likely won’t pick it up again), so major spoilers for the first third of the novel. The author’s note on Amazon assures us that it has a happy ending, so make of that what you will.

Kiiind of NSFW? I tried very hard to keep this PG

Immediately it opened with just, a weird and uncomfortable kiss scene. It’s first person POV, this main character wakes up with amnesia with two people talking about him and he just refuses to open his eyes, then someone kisses him WAY too descriptively, and then I guess it turns out the main character is paralyzed? Or at least so weak that he can barely move? We don’t get to see either of the other characters yet, but we learn from their conversation that they’re both foreigners and their names are… Chaser and Rock. Lock? Eh, I’m going to call him Rock.

Nothing else happens for what felt like 40 pages, and then ALL AT ONCE, over the span of maybe 3 pages, you find out:

  1. The world has ended and all life on the planet has been wiped out
  2. The main character, Mugi (麦… wheat??) is the last human alive, because he cryogenically frozen
  3. Chaser, the one who nonconsensually kissed Mugi, is actually an android and he’s supposed to revive the world somehow
  4. The other person, Rock, is not a person at all but a GIANT TALKING BIRD. With… a PHD?

Then there was some bizarre stuff with a marriage proposal, some kind of death pact that isn’t even discussed, and the most horrific dubious-consent sex scene that I’ve ever had the misfortune of reading, in any language. It did not sound like it would be pleasant for either party, unless I missed some critical details- but I suspect the author just, uh, didn’t understand how things work. Then afterwards Mugi is lamenting and Chaser looks over and says "これは、精液ではないですね。” And I thought, “Oh hey, I just learned 液 on WK.” And then I realized what it meant and laughed so hard I cried. The end, that’s as far as I got. I don’t want to think about this book anymore.

TL;DR: very BL-esque in all the worst ways (like, uh, consent as a concept). Telling myself it’s translator error, because Japanese negatives are so dang confusing. Regardless, do not recommend.

So what about you guys? What was the last book you read that was just so bad you had to stop? And does anyone know any LGBTQ+ books that don’t suck?

Update: I kept reading and it got a lot better and tackled some of the issues I had with it fairly directly. I’m about halfway through now, we’ll see how I feel at the end.


Is amazon promoting this book currently? I’m pretty sure I saw it recently.

Quite possible! I think I ended up getting it partially because it kept coming up, haha.

Not a book, but my favorite LGBT thing I’ve found recently is オハナホロホロ, which I’ve been reading on GANMA!. I’m not sure exactly how to put it, but I guess basically it’s the most overall queer thing I’ve seen in Japanese.

Basically two women, Maya and Michiru, lived together as lovers, Michiru ran off for some reason, five years later she’s back with a baby she had in the interim and now they’re living together again but as just roommates this time (for now??). Also their neighbor drops in all the time and is close to the kid, and it’s pretty quickly revealed that he and the kid’s father were lovers, but he backed off when Michiru got pregnant.

Anyway I like the adult, very queer, very messy relationships and weird, messy living situations. I relate to it more… I guess it feels more American in sensibilities.


Oh thank you for the recommendation! That sounds exactly like the kind of thing I’m looking for!

thanks for the reccomendation! now i’ve started a list of books i need to read, as well as anime to watch :sweat_smile:

i don’t yet know how good it is, but we’re starting a book-club for やがて君になる.

The Roc is a giant bird from middle-eastern mythology, maybe the name is taken from there?

1 Like

Oh cool! I’ll check it out, thank you!

THAT MAKES SENSE. Thank you for solving this mystery for me :joy_cat:

Update on あなたが涙を見せない理由: I kept reading because I have poor impulse control and it actually did get better. It directly addressed some of the consent issues, so big kudos to the author- that was my biggest hangup and BL as a genre is sooo bad about it. It definitely isn’t getting any less weird, but that I can handle. May finish this book after all. :smiley_cat: