📚📚 Read every day challenge - Spring 2022 🌸 🌱


This evening I kind of got sucked into making クールドジ男子 incorrect quotes, and then whatever I was doing during the day, so I didn’t read nearly as much as I’d intended. My hands kept getting all gross and sweaty, too, which didn’t help. Ugh, I hate summer. Anyway, I did, however, read 6 (I think? Unless I’m forgetting where I started) pages of 海辺のカフカ, finishing ch 1.

This is the first time my phone’s IME has suggested ゑ from え. Granted, it was me double-checking to make sure 末 on its own is read すえ since my default is still まつ, and not me actually typing, which may make a difference. But it still surprised me to see it lmao

Some vocab of note:

First, one I found in my phone that I forgot to put on yesterday’s list:
爆誕 (ばくたん) [noun, する verb] sudden emergence; sudden formation; coming out of nowhere; bursting onto the scene. This is a slang word.

And now from today:
溺れる (おぼれる) [一, intransitive] to drown; to nearly drown; to sink below the surface (of water)
遺伝 (いでん) [noun, する verb] heredity; (genetic) inheritance


Oh wow! Feel free to check out the book club threads, and if you have specific questions you can still ask questions there! I’m sure that many of the participants are still monitoring the threads.

No, absolutely not. The style is a bit different, e.g. nno quotation marks for direct speech, long sentences, unusual vocab and kanji, but with enough patience for lookups it’s totally doable.

(I read the first part with the club but I was very slow reading it so I deemed that it’s not a good usage of my time, and I dropped it. Maybe I‘ll pick it up again next year or so…)


Answer to personal details

I‘m so sorry for your loss! Totally relatable that you wouldn’t want to read the book right now. But when you do eventually, I‘m sure it will be a great way to remember him.


June 1 :cherry_blossom: Home Post

More AI: The Somnium Files, of course :grin: and what a day it was. Some of my questions were answered, and some were very much not :joy: wild all around!

AI stuff

Well some of my structural questions have been answered; I “finished” my first route! :tada: It’s definitely not actually over, just locked for now, but progress is progress. So yes, it is more like VLR and the like where you hop between timelines and oh things sure do happen differently. イリス and 応太(おうた) are alive! For now anyway :sweat_smile: And イリス still lost an eye so things aren’t great exactly, but at least marginally less horrific so that’s nice.

But my first route… a lot happened. I met 89 which just. There’s a lot there huh? I have no idea what to make of the whole scene with (ひとみ) being murdered by someone who’s supposedly been dead for a year, and where 伊達(だて)'s boss shows up, and also it’s the scene from his first somnium way back when, like?? And then the video of his boss killing the guy from the Diet? I… hm. I have more questions than ever :joy:

On a lighter note, アイボゥ punched a window and well:

So hey not all is grim!

Reading-wise it’s still been really great. Voice-acting is a definitely a big boost in that department, so it’s nice having basically every word read to me :joy: A difference I suppose it that I haven’t been using game2text or anything since I can’t bring myself to play it in windowed mode, so it’s just been looking stuff up from listening and that’s been totally fine which is also nice! There are lots of dumb language puns which are always fun :grin: all in all a good time!

Ryouichi true route?? Just sail off into the sunset haha


Will do! With all the things I’m juggling, and it falling into a pile of probably hundreds of things that I “definitely want to do sometime in Japanese,” if I take ages and you decide to do it sometime, feel free to reach out to me too, haha. That situation is heavy, so sorry to hear about it, but yeah, with time I think reading it will be a really meaningful experience.

Glad to hear that, thanks. I didn’t know about the lack of quotation marks – while that’s not something that’ll keep me away, I can already see myself fumbling to realize what’s going on for the first half of the book every time it does it :sweat_smile: .

If only! Gonna throw Shiki overboard and just keep sailing. I guess Key does the side friend characters well. Some day I want to get to Little Busters and it sounds like a huge part of why that one has the legacy it does is just how much people love the friendship within it.


Thanks! Didn’t know that there’d been a bookclub for this, I’ll have to check it out!

Judging from the updates you share, I think your level of reading is quite a bit higher than mine, so I think you’d be able to! But yeah, it is a bit of a commitment, I could wait until my reading is better for smoother reading but nahhh.

I’ve read it in English, but I’ve always wanted to see how it comes across in Japanese, since a lot of nuance is always lost in translations no matter how good they are. I’ve read the Junji Ito version too, which, while amazing… isn’t quite the same :rofl:
Also seen the Aoi Bungaku* anime series with it, so while I know what to expect… it doesn’t really help with understanding the language at all. But so far I’ve been able to recognise all the kanji (though recall is a bit slow for some) and the obscure stuff is, from what I’ve seen so far, either in hiragana or has furigana. The sentence structure is completely not what I’m used to though. But if your grammar is solid (which mine is not) then it’d probably be a much easier read.

*I’d recommend this a watch as it is probably one of my favourite anime series I’ve seen, and also covers the story Kokoro by Soseki Natsume, which is also on the “want to read” but that is probably getting ahead of myself now :thinking:


Really sorry to hear about your friend, I think it’d be a good way to remember your friend by when you feel up to it, it’d be a meaningful way to connect to them again. But it is ultimately a rather depressing read, so it’s not exactly the best of stories to be reading with it being so soon. I hope you manage to read it at some point!

Thanks! I’ll most likely be voicing my language woes on my updates here as I gradually lose my grips on comprehension :laughing:

And thanks to you all for the interest, now I have additional reading motivation! :books: :muscle:


:blossom: May 25-31 :blossom: :house:
Back from my trip! I managed to squeeze in some reading on most days but also missed a few. I read the last two chapters of マグメル volume 5 on the plane. This was my first time feeling like reading in Japanese without a dictionary went really smoothly, there were only two words in the first chapter I didn’t know and one was a place name (静岡) and the other one was kanji I knew and could guess the meaning. This was mostly only possible because this chapter didn’t involve much marine specific stuff and ended in the next chapter when they started discussing 化学合成生物 and 硫化水素 (when I luckily realized I actually did have a dictionary downloaded) but it was nice while it lasted :joy:

After that I continued reading 真夜中のパン屋さん and finished the 上. I really didn’t like the way this customer’s story was handled and I honestly didn’t enjoy reading this section of the book, it felt like it really downplayed how harmful stalking can be and it established one of the main characters as being kind of one himself and totally agreeing with the customer who’s revealed to be a stalker (apparently the guy who makes bread followed a married woman throughout Europe and that’s how he got so good at making bread). I think the point might kind of be that all of the characters are a little messed up but still help each other and other people out but the things he said really rubbed me the wrong way and I found this part really hard to read. I’ll probably continue reading it though because I already bought the 下 before reading this part and the end revealed that there’s some really messy stuff relationship wise between the bread making guy and the owner of the bread shop involving the bread shop man’s wife that makes me wonder how these two guys in a situation that should’ve been a 修羅場 ended up opening a breadshop together and now I have to know.

Then the last few days I started the game 幻想マネージュ, so far it’s about Ema, a witch living in France who lost her ability to use magic as well as her memories of when she was ten when she got into an accident and almost drowned. One day a traveling amusement park comes to her town and she goes to take a look. There she meets the head of the park who she apparently met in the year her memories were lost, who knows she’s a witch and reveals to her that everyone working at the amusement park is chained there with magic and can’t leave the park and asks for her help. Seems interesting so far, I think this game is modeled after ゆめかわいい so everything is very pastel, the UI is kind of a lot, super sparkly, but really cute so far. It’s also kind of refreshing because the last game I played was so dark.


Love the amusement park vibes and the animated textbox, not so fond of the katakana french :joy:

The textbox fades in and out like this when scenes change


Can’t believe the challenge is already over, this post is already way too long so I think I’ll type up my summary tomorrow.


Haha, that was definitely me at the time :joy_cat:

A short example from a different book to avoid spoilers

I think 人間失格 is probably somewhat easier than the following excerpt, but anyways. This is from a book called 糞尿譚 (ok in all honesty when I started I did not know the title’s kanji and thought eh, whatevs, just a title, right? :roll_eyes: Luckily it’s not a kinky story but instead about a guy who runs a business collecting feces from houses’ cesspits :sweat_smile:)

Anyways, here he is going around the houses trying to collect the fees for his service:


By now I’ve come to like that style, actually! I can sound it out in my head so I can hear how the people speak, and that’s pretty enjoyable in itself.
If you are somewhat comfortable reading that, then you shouldn’t worry at all about 人間失格, would be my expectation.

Now that you say that :joy_cat:
There were a few discussions in the weekly threads about comparing different translations (to English and French, iirc) and some of them were really off :crazy_face: :woman_facepalming: It’s worthwhile checking out the threads just for these bits, I guess.


:tiger2: :books: The June Tanuki Den: Date 20220602 :cherry_blossom: :raccoon:

No Longer Tanuki Progress: 0.02%

Not a whole lot of time today, so haven’t been able to read as much as I wanted, managed to get a paragraph in, but hopefully I’ll have more time tomorrow!

:seedling: Japanese found in the tall grass :seedling:


土台「どだい」ー From the beginning/onset; foundation/base
「しわ」ー Wrinkles

I remember the English version being pretty stiff, even the short bit I’ve read so far in Japanese the tone of voice really comes through, the English didn’t really give the same impression, just felt like a literal translation at times. I’ll check the threads when I have a chance!


Oh yeah totally, as long as you’re able to not get frustrated, I’ve heard so many people attribute very good results to hanging in with things that are really hard for them at the time. It’s probably going to be great for you.

You know… I’m more curious than I should be at hearing that, ugh, haha.

I see what you mean about the writing style – it kinda gives it an interesting, different voice when he’s listing things people say in that way. The section was a bit of a struggle but most of that was more due to looking up a whole bunch of words and blanking on kanji, heh. Some things I was annoyed I didn’t remember, I think I actually mined written a different way, like 揚句.


June 2

Felt like rereading the last chapter I read of Sailor Moon to start prepping for reading all of volume 4 (kanzenban) to finish the Black Moon arc. And I’m confused. I barely remember reading or even seeing most of that. A few bits and pieces here and there.

But I get why, the first half of the chapter or so is spent with enemies and I basically know one out of every third word or so, so without lookups I basically didn’t understand most of it. I did not bother looking up stuff because with that many look ups, I just get lost anyway. (Just to be clear, grammar isn’t confusing me, all the look ups would have been vocabulary.)

When the chapter moved into some other things, it was easier to follow along.

Mostly I wanted to remember where I was with each character so reading new material wouldn’t confuse as much. And by the end of the chapter, I felt like I got that. So that is a win at least.

I wonder if there are mangas that are Sailor Moon-esque, but with more modern day and less of the magic/fantasy elements. (And still preferably not meant for young kids like Cardcaptor Sakura which I’m sure I could tackle more easily, but I’m not that interested in reading as a manga.) One where I could acquire fantasy vocabulary in a smaller dose to ease the harder parts of Sailor Moon. More familiarity with the kind of vocabulary the baddies use and all the magic words (and the many very different verbs) would be so useful to understanding more of Sailor Moon.

Ah well, as mentioned, I will read until the end of the arc, and then maybe put Sailor Moon on hold again until I can expand that part of my vocabulary. (The reason Sailor Moon doesn’t work so well for this, is that they come in downpours every once in a while, and then mostly disappear, and the downpour again, and disappear. I’d rather have a dribble that was woven through the whole narrative.)

Did read (English) fiction yesterday, have tackled non-fiction already today. Will get to English fiction later.

Edit: If it wasn’t clear, reading Sailor Moon again was a bit discouraging, if not unexpectedly so.


Hahaha maybe we should start a reading club then :joy_cat: (I haven’t finished it yet either.)
It’s very short, it’s free, and it won the Akutagawa prize, so what can possibly go wrong :crazy_face:

That’s reading older books in a nutshell :grin:


I’m very impressed by all of you starting or planning to start No Longer Human. I haven’t read it in translation, and while I would theoretically love to read the original, I’m not yet fluent enough in reading to dare start it. I feel that with a subject matter this depressing (I’m assuming), it would be better for me to have no language struggles on top of the expected emotional ones when I decide to face it. That said, if a spontaneous book club were to form, I’d probably consider joining. Meanwhile, I’ll be following @Zakarius 's updates with interest!

@pocketcat reply

I’m very sorry for your loss. It seems to be a very meaningful book and if it held such significance for your friend I can’t begin to imagine how you will experience it when you decide to read it.

I too am very intrigued, I must confess! I looked it up on Amazon and the reviews were very favourable.

Shall we? :smiley:


You mean like in the old joke, “when three Germans meet, they will found a club.” ? :flushed:
Looks like it might even work when there are non-Germans in the mix…

OK, I guess I’m crazy, but when shall we start? :joy_cat:


You do have me genuinely curious, but I think it’s a little hard from my perspective for something I pick up on a whim right now. At the moment I’m working on shifting a little more time to listening and also digging myself out of the pile of things I started, so I’m hesitant to commit to anything where other people are expecting me to do it, particularly when I think it’d be very slow going.

On an unrelated note, been meaning to make a big post like this for my future plans…

Summer Pockets is still not THAT close to finishing; I think the true route is supposed to be long, but I've been thinking a lot about my next VN choices so I'm going to throw some out here to work through my own thoughts, and if anyone is curious, have a look.

FLOWERS -Le volume sur printemps-

This one’s been on my mind for a while. It’s a sort of lesbian romance, light mystery thing. I think it’s considered relatively easy to read. I love that art; the lighter colors are a good contrast to how bright everything is in Summer Pockets. It’s shorter but part of a series – right now I might want a one-off? Dunno, just definitely want to read something that doesn’t take me ~6 months hahaha. The sort of fancy boarding school setting would be a good opportunity to learn more polite language.

Hashihime of Old Book Town

This one is boy’s love! I seem to be unintentionally gravitating to LGBT stuff, maybe that’s a contrast I want. I do definitely desire something unlike Summer Pockets, because as nice as it’s been, I’m ready for a break. I’ve heard stellar things about this one’s presentation. It’s about a guy in 20s Japan who starts looping 3 days and seeing his friends die as he does. Longer, (~33 hours reading at actual native speed according to VNDB) but still not as long as Summer Pockets, and a one off this time.


An older, deeper cut by Kotaro Uchikoshi – the writer of the Zero Escape series that’s been popular in these threads. A sci-fi, body swapping kind of thing? I don’t know a ton about it but to some degree I like every Uchikoshi I’ve read

sweet pool

Another boy’s love type VN, though my impression is that the content is rather extreme and “love” is pushing it. Sort of a depressing body horror about a guy having awful hallucinations. Actually belongs to the “utsuge” subgenre, “depressing games.” I’ve always enjoyed fiction that makes me have a bad time when there’s a point to it, heh.

There are so many more on my mind, but my choice will probably be one of those? That’s how I’m leaning now anyway. Honestly no idea how hard most of them are, besides Flowers being allegedly easy. We’ll see!


Ah, sure, no pressure at all! To be honest I also don’t know whether it’s a good idea… I’m getting more and more nervous with the upcoming JLPT :cold_sweat: and there will be a hell of a lot of book clubs waiting for me afterwards :grin: So I would probably do this only if it happens in slow-motion, maybe like 10 pages per week or something…


I’ve already downloaded it, so… any time, I guess? :grin:
It’s only 73 pages apparently, but then it was written in 1937, so I don’t expect these pages to be especially easy.

Maybe not yet then… Of course there would be no pressure anyway (I didn’t even expect a schedule as such), it’s just fun to read a book in parallel with others, even if it’s not in an organized book club setting. The way it happened with 三毛猫ホームズ for example, everyone reading at different speeds and doing their own thing, but still updating on their progress and thoughts, was fun and very casual, I thought.


Ooooh opening that was so dangerous, they all sound really interesting rip :joy: more things to add to my ever-growing list of games to play haha.


Noice! :grin:

Yes, that’s why I picked it in the first place - totally ignoring that it’s old and potentially difficult to read :woman_facepalming:

That sounds like a good idea actually! So let’s start :joy_cat:

I’m currently still reading 穴 but if I push myself a little I might be able to finish it over the weekend. Also I have read about 1/3 of 糞尿譚 already so that will give you enough time to settle in and to start reading. (I think I will read the first part again but it shouldn’t take thaaat long, hopefully.)

Nonetheless, I would suggest setting up a book club thread for it (just a single thread should do as there are no chapters iirc, or maybe just very few?) because there are a bunch of things that I found confusing and it might be better if we could discuss these separately, is my feeling. Also there are quite a number of persons involved in the story, and it might be good to keep track of who is who. (I’m keeping lists of those persons anyway, and if I can find it again I will add it straight away.)
I could set up a thread (and probably turn it into a wiki so that everybody can contribute).

What do you think?


Sounds great!

I’m also interested in your impressions on 穴, when you get the time :slight_smile: Both difficulty- and interest-wise.


Alright, I will set it up tomorrow night latest (together with the other book clubs).

Difficulty-wise: It’s a bit of a mixed impression that I have. The first few pages were a bit of a struggle because of several layers of direct speech right at the start (which is still my nemesis :sweat_smile:) and it took me a while to get used to that, but I feel like I improved a lot in that regard. Also of course sometimes there are a bunch of unknown words, but other pages just fly by without many lookups.
So it’s not exactly easy, but I still think that L38 on Natively is pretty much overrated. Maybe L33 or something would be more appropriate.
Oh, and now I remembered what I struggled with in the first part as well: There are lots and lots and lots of details. And I somehow thought that they all might be important and somehow unconsciously tried to take them all in and tried to memorize them? (I guess I read too many detective stories recently :joy_cat:) That was extremely mentally exhausting in the beginning. When I realized it, I tried to let go, and that made it a lot more digestible.

Interest-wise: It’s just very crazy. I’m more than 2/3 in and I still have no clue at all. Which is pretty interesting in its own right :upside_down_face: