Something I’ve really noticed is, when doing a difficult thing like this, even the presentation can matter a lot. I think I lucked out that when I was doing simple graded readers, enough of those were vertical to give me a taste of how that worked. Even still, I think I’ve found games and visual novels approachable because even though it’s all the same, the ones I’ve been reading hide most of the text and just give it to you line by line. Then on the other hand, while it’s not exactly the same issue with vertical reading, I think I’m only now, while nearing the end of my second book, starting to get over the quick shock at just being confronted with a full page of Japanese characters, haha. Really glad to hear you’ve found something that helps! Moving to a light novel is a really big step!
It’s probably not as common anymore because even radio personalities have become visible through social media and therefore have to be as ‘presentable’ as celebrities.
March 26 Home Post
Wellll, I finished my first playthrough of VLR today Honestly wild? I think the routes are generally shorter than the ones in 999 (there’s just a billion of them lmao), but like… it still only took like twelve hours? Looking back at 999 where I was twelve hours in and just learning everyone’s codenames So if I wanted proof that I’ve improved, there it is! I’m a decent ways into my second playthrough too so… I only started a few days ago and I’ve already almost finished two routes? Growth
Time to scream about VLR
I have complicated feelings about K so how better to start than with a cute goof:
He had such so much fun riding the nightmare bunny, precious :’) (and writing this with the context of at least some of his backstory I’m realizing how sad this actually is, zero escape pulls no punches ever huh)
But yeah my first ending was an absolute failure, I’m too kind and trusting K absolutely blindsided me, I guess I don’t get to be naive and innocent in zero escape anymore lmao. But after doing that, I immediately ended up in at least a route where you get blasted with K’s angsty backstory and like dude?? It’s pretty messed up, and I’m sure connected to the nonary games in ways I don’t know yet but man… rough
I was also absolutely blindsided by ルナ and アルス getting killed, idk why really but somehow I was not prepared for it at all, if anything I thought it’d be クォーク but nope, even more unanswered questions
And last but not least ディオ… he is clearly involved in some things, probably the same secret organization or whatever 四葉 refuses to talk about? But like as aggro he is, I don’t get the sense he would have killed that lady for her bangle and messed with the game like that without a good reason. All the characters are like “you can’t trust him!” and sure maybe not, but idk, I don’t think he’s up to anything bad actually (as shocking as that is lmao)
Glad to provide, I have to outlet my chaos and anguish somewhere I’m glad to hear Summer Pockets is still going well too! We love a random N1 grammar point, Zero Escape has been pretty good for those as well haha
Ahh congrats, I’m glad it’s going well! A whole book chapter in a day is an accomplishment in and of itself I definitely get the vertical text struggle too, it’s an adjustment for sure! But hey, what better way to get used to it than reading yeah?
Yeah the structure is a bit different this time, you’ll see if it hasn’t been made clear yet, but you’re meant to be switching over to other routes a little more than them being a long thing the way 999’s were. Nonetheless, I don’t mean to diminish anything! They still aren’t short. You really do sound like you’re moving at an impressive pace!
Finding my place on the page had been my biggest problem when first I started reading novels. It sometimes took longer to find where I left off than to read the whole page itself. I read ebooks, so I would sometimes remember to highlight the last word I read, but not always. I’m happy to say that with enough exposure this problem goes away completely, and I now find it quite natural to quickly scan a page to find where I was, or even to find a relevant passage that I remember reading several pages back.
The horizontal bookmark is such a genius idea for paperbooks! Other than highlighting, a trick one might use in digital books is to change the screen orientation to landscape. The vertical lines will then be much shorter, and more in line with our horizontal reading experience where we get many shorter lines instead of a few long ones.
Finished reading through vol 3 today. It was a neat read like usual. Tanuki is just way too cute to ignore. This covers the winter part of the series, I guess spring might be next, but it would be a while I think before that’s collected in a volume. Took plenty of pictures with my phone and sharing a few of them here.
From the last chapter I learned that sobering up is expressed as 酔い覚まし. I think I have enough time to squeeze in Avan before the new challenge(s) arrive, so I’ll be reading that tomorrow.
Today I read Chapter 13 of Mitsuboshi Colors. This was a really fun chapter, I always seem to enjoy the chapters featuring モノクロ大佐 - though that may just be because I love cats
I also read the second half of chapter 2 of Happiness, which is the ABBC assignment for this week. I wasn’t sure about this book at first, but it’s getting more and more interesting.
Ooh, thats a really good idea! Thank you
I don’t have anything to add but those pictures are amazing. The drawings are gorgeous.
No wonder you all fell for the Tanuki. What’s the name of the series again? You know… for science.
Yeah and the pictures don’t even capture the entirety of its beauty. It’s called 雨と君と by 二階堂 幸.
Thank you so much!
I think I’m going to need a bookmeter account for my future “want to read” list. Browsing this community is both a delight and a dangerous thing .
I still have two more chapters of 山田くんと７人の魔女２ to read but the month is almost finished. I don’t want to strain myself reading so I guess I will be continuing the manga for the spring reading challenge. I have a pretty good system going alternating between one shounen and shoujo manga volume at a time. And I still have over a hundred free volumes of manga to read on my Bookwalker app so I can keep the challenge going for a while. I started the fall challenge late and didn’t even manage to read two volumes of manga before the next challenge but this time, I’ve read two whole volumes and most of the third one before the spring challenge starts next month. That’s progress!
Looks like I’m slipping back into posting more or less daily, heh. Take that as a sign I’m doing a little better
Let’s get the big one upfront: I finished my second Japanese book today! Zoo 2 is finished! I once again wrote a somewhat detailed review on Natively. TLDR, I loved some of the humor and concepts, but it’s overall weaker than Zoo 1 and the inconsistency in difficulty makes it a hard recommend for learning. I have so many things I’d like to do that I’m not even sure if I’m going to launch right into another book (I’ll be reading Summer Pockets as close to daily as possible regardless), but if I do… the path of least resistance would be to try Goth, what seems to be everyone’s favorite Otsuichi book. Then definitely finally reading someone else, if I do opt for one more by him, haha.
I also read Summer Pockets, but only about 2000 characters today from a combination of being more busy and shifting a little time over to finishing up Zoo 2. It’s been fun. Just 2 quick observations to share:
There are harder sentences in this VN, but again, after finding 限り kind of a difficult concept in the past, it made me happy to get through this sentence without much issue.
Also, a character brought up 名字ランキング, which I had to look up to see exactly what they meant by ranking names. Turns out, as I had suspected, it’s about the most common surnames. And going by this website, it seems Summer Pockets was indeed correct when it listed the top 4 most common across Japan, haha.
Feeling great about this again, can’t wait for the return of the challenge proper
New thread is hereeeee
March 27 Home Post
I kinda finished another route today? (you were just in time @Daisoujou, I got “to be continued”-ed basically right after where I was ) So yeah I started another one and went a completely different direction, and it’s been fun! Honestly the hardest part was some of the puzzles, not the language
Woo VLR things
Yeah so the route I got cut off on wasn’t going super well, as it turns out ディオ was definitely not the only killer which I had a feeling was the case, but considering he very much got killed there’s absolutely more going on there so who knows! Plus his bangle being destroyed, and 四葉 and 天明寺 still MIA, rough all around, so we’ll see how I can maybe fix that in the future
Schroedinger’s cat huh… I get the distinct feeling this will come up again haha. シグマ keeps accidentally saying にゃ which is funny and cute but I also don’t trust Zero Escape to not make this an angsty backstory thing somehow I also have a feeling this will end up being used with the like recovery pods which… yikes, that’s a prospect
I still have very little idea what’s actually going on big-picture, but I’ve had a decent track record with crackpot theories so I’ll throw one out there: so something’s clearly up with ファイ, she knows too much and she uses a lot of weird old words, and apparently she was also kidnapped on 12/25, when シグマ was, but I’m suspecting maybe not the same 12/25…? I think she might’ve been in like cryo-sleep or something for a while, idk any details obviously but that’s my current guess
Hmm I’m thinking about K again too, I’m always suspicious with characters where their faces are specifically kept from us it was true with サンタ’s sister, I suspect it’ll be relevant again. Also whatever experiment ruined his whole childhood is definitely relevant, I’m sure I’ll find out more later on
Ahhh the spring challenge approaches!! I’ll have to get set up soon, very exciting
Ahhh very exciting, congrats!!
Oh yeah, now that you mention it, the VLR puzzles are kind of hard sometimes. Pretty sure, as I recall, it’s a step up from 999. I know I had some difficulties.
…I am in the exact same position but somehow still keep buying more things to read in Japanese
Hey, that’s really good to hear!
Just a minor heads-up that the Intermediate Book Club is starting 佐賀のがばいばあちゃん 👵🏼 (Intermediate Book Club) on Saturday just in case you (or anybody else, of course) are looking for a new book
I struggled with this so much on the first book I read and I used the obi strip that came with the book as a bookmark which really helped. I’m surprised how quickly I’ve got used to it now and my eye goes to the right column about 80% of the time now!
Chapter 40 of Yotsuba today! I’ve been looking forward to reading this chapter since the last one ended on a bit of a cliffhanger
Only one chapter left in this volume. I was tempted to read it tonight, but its almost midnight already so I probably shouldn’t!
Ooh, thats a good idea!
Yeah they’re definitely more elaborate overall, I was doing the cabin area and I’m way too stubborn to not go for the gold files but absolutely no combination that made sense to me was working I got there eventually though lmao