So interesting - I wouldn’t have expected that these three books (including Time Girl) differ that much in difficulty… Apparently I must have learned a thing or two over time
(And sorry that my recommendations are too hard for you - I hope you can find more suitable books in the meantime!)
I must say those (and the other earlier) screenshots are extremely beautiful! I can very much understand why you wanted to read this VN.
Today I continued with ifの悲劇, and I like it a lot! The author’s writing style feels pretty … chill, in a way? Hard to describe for me, but it feels as if the protagonist is not taking himself overly serious somehow (although this is a very serious story). Also the prologue manages to mix fiction and reality in a fascinating way, blurring the lines in my head, which is interesting. (By the way, yesterday I thought I had finished the prologue already, but it was only the first part of it that I had finished in other words, I’m still in the prologue.)
I read chapter 2 of よつばと！ today.
Didn’t find it quite as simple as yesterday, probably mostly because I’m a bit tired. I had a little bit of trouble parsing some of the casual bits like うめぇ instead of うまい - but nothing too difficult.
There was a bit where a character explained how to write her name.
This made me smile, because thats something I had a conversation with my tutor about in our last session. (“How do I know how to spell somebody’s name? Is it rude to ask? How do people explain which characters to use?”).
So it was nice to see an example come up naturally in something I was reading
Pretty happy that I finally got to chapter 2 of 夜カフェ. I’m enjoying the pacing and appreciate how smooth the writing is. My husband was surprised to see me reading what looked like a novel to him since it was nothing but text, and he thought I might not understand the content. But when I showed him the writing, he agreed that unlike real novels, the writing is very きれい and easy to follow. So if you’re on the fence about picking this one up or are looking for a good first book, I’d recommend this one.
Honestly, I’m going much slower than I want to, but it can’t be helped that Tan-chan comes first. She was having a really hard time last night falling asleep and then waking up shortly after. She finally settled by 1:30AM, so we got a late start this morning. I think it’s the 4-month sleep regression period I heard about on top of another growth spurt since she’s been eating a lot too. I heard a lot of other parents have it rougher, so I’m thankful she sleeps for long periods of time even if her schedule is a little off right now.
Anyway, if I could choose my schedule, I would have no problem reading a chapter (about 15 pages) per day. The content is interesting enough that I want to keep reading and find out how things turn around for the protagonist.
We left off at Hanabi being relieved that Yayako didn’t have her usual group of followers with her, which she was a little relieved about. But in a few days, she managed to create a new group of friends from other elementary schools, so Hanabi realizes she’s going to have to return to the life of laying low so she won’t get picked on.
She thinks about joining the badminton club because it’s the only physical activity she’s really good at, but once she heard Yayako was planning to join, she decided to give up on the idea. Meanwhile at home, Hanabi has family problems with her mother and father fighting. Since her mother is really focused with her fashion designer job, she doesn’t have time to cook and do the housework like a traditional Japanese wife is “supposed to” do despite coming home often to (I assume) pick up some things for work.
It’s really sad how one person could take away so much of Hanabi’s self confidence. When I read the bit about her planning to join the badminton club so she could regain a sense of herself, I was cheering her on until she became discouraged again when she found out Yayako would be there and therefore give her a hard time.
Vocab for Reference - New words are bolded
本の・ほんの・mere; only; just
数人・すうにん・several people; a few people
早速・さっそく・at once; immediately
疾っくに・とっくに・long ago; already; a long time ago
限り・かぎり・as long as …
密・ひそか・secret; private; surreptitious とろい・slow (slightly pejorative); dull; stupid
敢えて・あえて・purposely (of something needless, unexpected or seemingly counterproductive, etc.); daringly (doing something); deliberately; intentionally
打ち消す・うちけす・to negate (esp. a sound); to drown out
呪う・のろう・to curse; to put a curse on; to detest intensely
送る・おくる・to spend (time); to live one’s life とぼとぼ・totteringly; trudgingly
足取り・あしどり・gait; walk; stride; pace; step; manner of walking
研ぐ・とぐ・to wash (rice)
同時・どうじ・simultaneous; concurrent; same time; synchronous; together
復帰・ふっき・return; comeback; reinstatement
ぺこり・action of quickly bowing or lowering one’s head; (with a) bob of the head パタンナー・pattern maker (for clothing); fashion designer
描く・かく・to picture in one’s mind; to imagine
画・が・stroke (of a kanji, etc.)
基づく・もとづく・to be based (on); to be founded (on); to be grounded (on); to be in accordance (with)
型紙・かたがみ・pattern paper (for dressmaking)
増える・ふえる・to increase; to multiply
いきいき・in a lively way; vividly; freshly; animatedly; actively; energetically
炊く・たく・to cook (grains, e.g. rice)
上達・じょうたつ・improvement (e.g. in skill, ability); advance; progress
作業・さぎょう・work; operation; manufacturing; fatigue duty
おかず・small dish (usu. one of several accompanying rice); side dish
のぞき込む・のぞきこむ・to look into; to peer in クスクス・chuckle; giggle
快く・こころよく・willingly; gladly; readily; with pleasure; with good grace
不図・ふと・suddenly; casually; accidentally; incidentally; unexpectedly; unintentionally
覚ます・さます・to awaken; to arouse from sleep
疎かにする・おろそかにする・to neglect; to ignore; to disregard; to make light of
揉む・もむ・to have a heated discussion
I finished my 1000 word quest earlier in January, and it’s made a huge difference. I recognize so many more words than I used to! I have to keep that in mind, because my vocabulary is still woefully inadequate to handle most/any novels.
On the other hand, I’m getting pretty good at reading manga! I finished read volume 6 of Yotuba during January, and now I’m partway through the 7th volume (have to order the rest before I can continue beyond that, but am waiting for conclusive results from the beginners book club next-book poll before I make a new order.)
Today I finally finished this week’s Way of the Househusband reading, and read a few more pages of my first grade reader. (I’m on the last story in the book now!)
Thank you! I’ve now officially stopped keeping the record, and so far it feels great! Like I can just stretch out and luxuriate in the Japanese language haha. Aside from still having to look up at least one new word per sentence when reading my first grade reader.
That’s so great! I agree those moments are some of the most satisfying. Because that’s something that you would never have been able to experience if you hadn’t started learning Japanese.
And I feel pretty good about getting the joke after a few moments, too.
Also, I’ve been meaning to mention that I’m really enjoying all the screenshots you’ve been posting from your VN! They’re all so pretty!
Oh man. I’ve officially joined the VN club, I think. For reading today I just played 999 and… it was so much fun actually?? Like I’ve tried played games in Japanese in the past and it’s always been kind of a slog, but somehow this felt like I was genuinely playing a game and that felt pretty amazing! I’m looking up a good amount of stuff, sure, but honestly the vocabulary hasn’t been that rough so far. It’s understandable, like, shockingly so I know a lot of that is due to reading this past month for sure; I’m constantly seeing words that I’m like “hm I definitely didn’t know that word two weeks ago, I really am progressing huh?” and it’s all very validating.
Japanese aside even, 999 is TOTALLY up my alley. Puzzle mystery game?? Yeah!!! It’s really cool solving puzzles in Japanese; the main ones I’ve had so far were all tied to the language so being able to figure out quickly felt pretty awesome. I know I got swept up in it, I really have no idea how much I read and I think that’s a good sign. It’s really just a novel with voice acting and puzzles, so I guess it’s what I’ve been preparing for!
I also learned a whole new concept in both Japanese and English: 数字根, or digital root. It’s like a specific type of calculation where you all the digits together and then do that again until you get a one-digit number, so for example: 568 > 19 > 10 > 1. Very interesting, cool puzzle possibilities
So yeah it’s going really well so far! I’m still early in the game so who knows if it’ll stay that way, but for now at least I’m having a good time
(Oh also happy February everyone!! We’re on month two now, it’s official )
古めかしい - old-fashioned
やけに - awfully, frightfully
色あせる - to fade
手榴弾 - hand grenade
Thank you!! I’m having a great time with it so far, so hopefully I can keep it up! I’ll do my best
Yesss getting language-specific puns is always such a good feeling!! That one’s great
Alright, the polar bear is gonna have to wait because this is most definitely out of my league, haha. I enjoyed the bits that I could make out, but the many interjections and unique ways the characters talk are beyond my skills at the moment. Time to find something to keep myself occupied before また、同じ夢を見ていた arrives!
As much as I enjoyed reading, I think listening is equally important so I’m trying to have a reading-listening study balance! Currently trying out Pokémon XY for listening practice and find it quite manageable! I’m so happy to be able to understand the gist of one of my favourite childhood series!
Furthermore, regarding 夏へのトンネル、さよならの出口, I’m glad to say that I found the audiobook and bought it. 8h in one sitting may be a bit too much of a challenge for me so I’m currently postponing this audiobook until someday in the future!
I also tried out the JLPT N4 questions on the official JLPT website and passed! I made it a goal to also pass the N3 maybe by taking the test? (If it is Available in Singapore)
Lastly, for those who celebrate (like me), Happy Chinese New Year!
Today’s reading was 『次の波が気になるぅ〜』 which is a blog post. Very short, but not necessarily easy for it. I had to focus more to understand because it was less direct writing than a simple factual articles. I should probably try to do more of these as they are more challenging and what I’m ultimately looking to refine my own skills on.
As for what it was about - the concept of waves of change and what ‘wave’ we are currently in.
Some words I looked up
うねり - large wave
様式 - style of doing s.t.
変革 - transform into s.t. new
脱産業社会 - “post industrial society”
Yesterday was quite a remarkable day. New event in TWSD popped out and I decided to translate it myself. Unfortunately, Jade and Sebek speak in such exquisite manner so I wasn’t able to understand most of their replies, but I got the overall direction of the story and most part of other guys dialogue.
I will try to return to it later, in order to decipher all grammar and some tricky words.
Learning て、ている and past forms really helped.