Oh ok, I see. By now I’ve gotten the impression that short stories are much more a thing in Japanese literature than in, say, German or English literature, at least regarding what I used to read and am reading now. I’m basically happy (and somewhat surprised) if I discover that a given book I got recommended is actually NOT a short story collection
So probably that’s why I’ve come to count them as well.
I see, so probably we just have different labels here. For me “significant length” in Japanese books starts at around 250 pages
Oh absolutely, I did not mean to downplay your achievement at all! (If it sounded like that, my apologies!) I just thought that you should maybe not downplay your other achievements either
Also, you are cordially invited to the Saikawa&Moe series if you got the hang of the thicker books by now
(not a joke actually as the author’s writing style is not difficult once you got used to it)
Reply to omk3
A big factor is of course the sheer page size - e.g. the page size of the German translation of 1Q84 is almost twice the size of the Japanese bunkobon iirc (not at home right now so can’t check).
Nonetheless, I think they are not that far apart in terms of page count iirc (granted, German text is usually longer than English text by a fair margin so that probably explains it)
I think this is mainly because Japanese readers really like the slim size of the volumes for various reasons (there are these standard sleeves e.g. made of leather, which should fit all books regardless, and of course it’s lighter and thus more comfortable to read on the train while standing etc.). I’ve seen single volumes of up to ~500 pages but I think the general trend is to rather split them up around the 300 page mark or so?
Your book length numbers are really interesting as well! I sometimes look at the Bookwalker “idealized page count” (based on character count, I guess) which usually is around 80-90 % of the “real page count” as found in the printed book. So not even Japanese publishers agree on the format…
Oh yes, S&M is definitely somewhere at the top of my want-to-read list, so I will get to it eventually Thanks!
Maybe those 633 pages are for the bunko version? If I compare the tankobon version with the translated paperback, then it’s ~550 vs ~350 so the difference is already a bit smaller. However, for かがみの孤城 I probably also have an explanation for the remaining difference because I own the translated version as well and there are simply sentences and sometimes whole paragraphs omitted in the translated version. I know this because I sometimes tried to look up the translation for tricky parts and quite often those tricky parts turned out to be missing! I was very surprised when I encountered this and I have no idea why they would do that, but maybe the publisher thought that a lower page count would sell better or something? It’s really strange because some of the omitted parts are actually relevant for the story (my wife read the translated version and said that it was confusing at certain points and I think that was exactly because of this).
However, I can’t imagine that they would do something like that in a book like 海辺のカフカ, so those stats are really puzzling indeed
Aren’t the formats just different? If I have an english book in my hand it’s always a bigger pagesize. I’m not sure if the text is just scaled up or if the font size is the same and they pack just more text on every one page.
If it is more text on one page it could also explain some of the discrepancy.
I remember someone mentioned the same about a tricky part of 地球星人. That’s very annoying and a(nother) good argument for always reading the original if possible. From what you saw, would you say they were edited out as non-essential for the plot, or were they just too hard to translate properly?
Good point, I forgot to take page dimensions into account. But again, it’s not so much the difference in pages from original to translation, there are so many factors that can affect that (page size, font, how concise each language tends to be, kanji vs kana balance, even blank spaces between chapters, etc etc). It’s just that I’d expect that difference to not vary so much. I wonder if it’s also the writing style of each translator? The same thing can certainly be expressed using fewer or more words, especially in cases when direct translation doesn’t work that well.
I would second this. I was expecting them to be tricky based on their Natively rating etc but I’d say that it’s probably like 90% even easier prose than かがみの孤城 with the occasional “let’s talk about science and computers for a few pages”. So those bits ramp the overall difficulty up a bit but on the other hand it’s one of the very few books I will sometimes read a chapter of without looking up more than a few words. That said, I’m only half way through the second book so maybe it will ramp up in difficulty but I wouldn’t be put off by the natively rating at least.
If most of your friends have children, it can be much harder to have a party for sure. So might be better to do the kind of party where they can take their kids with them. Won’t perhaps be the same, but going to a park with a good play area and having a picnic could be an option, and/or (go to a green area and) taking outdoor games with you. Or the beach. I guess if your birthday is in winter, those might not be viable options.
If nothing else, make your 30th/40th/x0th parties be smashingly huge instead. Because those is more generally accepted for big parties.
Unfortunately unless people have ready made babysitters (like their own parents), getting a babysitter is a chore and also costs money. So yeah, harder to do party things if they can’t take their kids with them.
I fear the employees at the party centre might intervene due to fearing you are having a breakdown.
Sounds like you are making the best of the situation. Except… ditch the guilt.
Read about the first 15 pages of chapter 7 of Yotsuba&. I got a late start and I have something more to cram in before bed, so only half a chapter today. A new character was introduced Miura-chan. The funniest thing so far was Ena’s and Miura’s reaction of Yotsuba’s chalk outline drawing of ジャンボ. Murder of a giant.
Alright, finally back to reading a bit. Between the actual recovery and some excuses I haven’t done proper reading in so many days. That’s fine, I intend to keep reading and using the thread in June as well. Hopefully I can already make it a daily thing again .
I kinda passed out from sleepiness while reading. This was the delightful part where Jotaro carries an unconscious and bleeding teen through Tokyo back to his house. Also jfc, Jot’s house is massive. I found this bit pretty pleasant to read because you can see how much Jotaro cares about his mom. It’s really adorable. Also, he says ちょいと instead of ちょっと, which sounds so much cuter to my ears lol.
The large scale parties that I’ve read about in books and seen on TV… I’ve never had one. We had simple traditions in my family. We buy a cake, put candles on it, sing the birthday song and give out presents. Then my father would take us out to our preferred eating place for dinner on the day or the nearest weekend. Then the pandemic hit so we had to eat in but we still got the cake and the presents. (Naturally, as the amount of candles increased, we either used number candles or just left them out.) Well, there are seven people in my family and most of us are quite introverted so that was enough of a ‘birthday celebration’ for us.
Now that I’ve written all this out, I realised that it’s since the pandemic hit that my brothers’ lack of birthday enthusiasm became more pronounced. After all, since we couldn’t go out, all we ended up doing was buying a cake and eating at home. We couldn’t even have delivery for some birthdays because the government instituted a lockdown. So since there was hardly anything to do, they probably just treated their birthdays as any other day. But! I can’t do that. At least one day in the year, I want to focus on my existence so I look forward to my birthday every year.
The truth is I have read something else, but I might not dare post everything here (and I believe it’s not exactly few - Bookwalker burned quite a sum of money). Nonetheless, Death Note Ch.15 is read. Nonetheless, learning quality varies, depending on how calm I am.
I find Wikipedia readable, but depends on how focused I am; and perhaps the difficulty of the article itself. After all, it does depend on whether I can keep up my 我慢. 羅生門 is more difficult, however.
Not sure if 青空文庫 is not properly configured, especially on mobile. But with Kiwi Browser, I can open up DevTools and 1. set lang="ja" 2. style="line-height: 2".
I’ve found Doctor K, and it feels quite cool. With Furigana too - I am considering reading it.
I watched Yuru Camp Season 1 Episode 1, but it is not on Netflix (which started from Season 2). I believe it is essential, as a antidote to manga’s lack of Furigana.
I can’t find Japanese subtitle so far, and I have to watch multiple times (but not advancing the episode).
Some songs of my interest in the past; but many new songs in various thread on this forum. Also, a little of VTubers - however, they don’t feel like conversational Japanese.
Found that AnkiDroid can record audio as well (but not as far as Speech-to-text). Also found Speechling - might be a nice way to restart doing flashcards and learning from phrasebooks.
Nonetheless, I didn’t do much Anki lately.
Found that YouTube with timestamp can be embedded in Anki (and AnkiDroid). Nonetheless, HTML should be edited too. (style="width: 100%; aspect-ratio: 16/9" and remove width=, height=)
I found jpdb.ioDiscord server, and chatted a little there.
I have always known that early levels’ context sentences are weird, like de-Kanji’d in odd places; but never took them seriously.
After the breakdown, I would deduce the grammar points, and look up on explantion, anyway. However, I also see an importance of running through the essentials sequentially, without skipping. though, I haven’t started the latter one, yet
Apparently, there are 78 vocabularies in Level 2, therefore around 200 sentences. It will probably takes 4 weeks / 1 month.
A man in Takagi Vol.1 club is quite actively learning, and I learnt a lot from him, and some others’ answers to him. Personally, I have watched Takagi EP.1, but not really read Vol.1
Today I read chapter 0 and part of chapter 1 of 海辺のカフカ for the book club, 14 pages. In my copy the end of chapter 3 (so week one’s reading) is through page 37 so I’ll probably finish it this weekend. So far I’m not terribly engaged, but I suspected from the outset that 村上’s writing style wasn’t totally my taste (I tried reading him before and got bored and never finished ). But, “have you read any Murakami?” is a common question when people learn I study Japanese so I figured I should try to finish something by him.
I also read a bit more of 心霊探偵八雲, finishing the second case in the book. I also learned a new word that I found interesting, spoilered for sensitive topic:
So apparently 水子 refers to the would-be baby of a miscarriage, a stillbirth, or an abortion. I saw the word in the text and was thinking “すいし? すいこ？みずし?” because surely it’s not read みずこ as that’s a name. Nope. It’s read みずこ alright. The name it appears is mostly written as 瑞子 for this reason. However, English wikipedia notes it used to be read すいじ which at least makes sense to me as a reading. One day I should look into how that switch happened (in Japanese).
Edit: I just realized we’re only reading through chapter 2 this week! Which means I’m actually exactly halfway done with the week’s reading as chapter 2 ends on my page 28.
I got home very late today, so only read two pages of 浦島太郎. Taro goes under the sea with the turtle, and they come to a beautiful palace. It is the Palace of the Dragon King. Inside is the younger princess, who meets them. She is preparing to take them somewhere. I’ll find out where tomorrow.
I saw the week 1 thread for 海辺のカフカ go live this afternoon and thought, “Woah, I thought that was starting next month, it’s today?!” (I’m no good with dates. Or time in general.) Nope, it’s tomorrow. It’s still the 27th in my time zone. Well, I could have started today anyway when I saw that, but I was already set on trying to finish 夜カフェ, so I’m starting tomorrow. I already got it out, took off the jacket, and set it on my stack of books I’m reading in the living room in preparation, so hopefully I won’t turn myself into a liar tomorrow lol
Yeah I decided to read ahead (some more) and finish 夜カフェ today, mostly because I wanted to finish a Japanese novel this month, and it became clear a long time ago that I was not finishing my current volume of 2.43 this challenge. That the 海辺のカフカ book club is starting now too is just a bonus. I read ch 9-13, which was about 65 pages of text. I kept going back and forth between “Hey, it’s only like 60 pages, that’s not that much” and “Okay this is kind of a lot actually” and “I can totally get this finished today” and “Nope it’s definitely a lot” and “Hey, I’ve already nearly finished it!” lol
I’m thinking, if I had the whole day free and I started it in the morning, reading a whole Aoi Tori Bunko book in a day might just be feasible. Based off how long ch 8 took me on Wednesday, I’d thought I might be able to finish one in a matter of hours like ハイキュー!!, but these 5 chapters today took me a lot longer than I’d expected, so maybe not. But regardless, it feels nice to have finished my third novel!
Even though I’d told myself I wouldn’t buy any novels this past book haul and would only get manga, not long before I ordered them I came across the 朗読CD (read by Enoki Junya) of 明日をくれた君に、光のラブレターを, and since it sounded good I decided to get the novel this time around with the intent of seeing whether I’d want to get the CD sometime for listening practice. I’d kind of been planning on starting it before the 海辺のカフカ book club started, but since I misjudged how much time I had left before then and it’s now, I’m not sure I wanna be starting another novel just yet. Well, we’ll see how reading 海辺 goes first. If I don’t have trouble keeping up with the pace, I may start reading this one on the days that I don’t read that, or I’ll just stick with manga.
Alright I’m invested, it’s official I played more AI: The Somnium Files as you could probably guess, and oh man things are happening. Poor みずき… first people suspecting her dad murdered her mom, and now her dad’s also turning up murdered? And in such brutal ways too, oof. I’m really curious what the deal with the incident 6 years ago is, there are some clear similiarities but also enough differences that they don’t seem directly related, but it’s certainly not a coincidence that 伊達 lost his memory (and his eye ) 6 years ago as well. And why are they being so secretive about it?? So yeah they’ve got me
Plot intricacies aside the dialogue is just fun; the amount of stupid jokes 伊達 makes with the most self-satisfied look on his face is just delightful:
Tomorrow I’ll (hopefully) start 海辺のカフカ with the book club, so that’ll be a change of pace for sure. I’ve still never finished an actual book in Japanese but I should be pretty well equipped at this point (again hopefully lmao). I’m looking forward to giving it a go!
Some parts were tricky to translate for me, but not for a professional translator, I think. I can remember a paragraph that was about the emotions that a character felt about something that had happened before that was omitted in its entirety and there was nothing untranslatable about that. I guess something like that could be seen as non-essential to the plot, but it did explain the motivations of the character at that point…