Saikawa & Moe (S&M) Series Reading Club

Ah ok no worries, I didn’t have any idea what people meant with “large gap” so I just started somewhere :joy_cat: I’m sure we will figure out something for everybody.

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Just realized that I missed this thread. I would definitely be interested in reading further volumes!

My personal vote is to start in mid-November, but December or January would be fine too.


:scream: And I missed that you missed it :sob:

I think I will run another poll closer to the end of the year so that we can determine the exact starting date. Will try to keep everybody in the loop this time around!


For those of you who are interested in continuing our journey, the books from this series are currently discounted on Bookwalker (through price reduction and increased coin cashback) until 2021-10-14T14:59:00Z.


Should we start deciding when we’ll read the next book?

Also I bought book 4 (詩的私的ジャック Jack the Poetical Private) because it was at 1€ at book-off, in case anyone’s interested in continuing the book club after that.

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Yeah, I was thinking along these lines as well, while critically eyeing the pile of new bookclubs that’s upcoming (and personal reading plans) :joy_cat:
Thanks for the push! :+1:

Haha same here :joy_cat: So we have to continue reading, right? :sweat_smile:

OK, to get an overview these are the book clubs that are ongoing or starting soon:

  • 地球星人 (Intermediate Book Club) runs until March 25th (takes a 1-week break around the holidays)
  • かがみの孤城 (Standalone, Intermediate level) runs until March 11th (takes a 2-week break around the holidays)
  • 本陣殺人事件 (Advanced Book Club) starts on Jan 1st, runs until uh I think I haven’t set up a schedule yet :sweat_smile: Feb/March
  • 薬屋のひとりごと (Advanced Book Club) starts right after 本陣殺人事件 (after a 1-week break)

For the next book in this series, 笑わない数学者, there are 11 chapters of pretty equal length (except the first and the last one) with an average length of ~42 pages or so. My schedule suggestion would be to read 1 chapter per week. (This is just fyi, I have put up a home thread for the book where we can discuss things.)

For the start time, we could start during the holidays (i.e. next Friday!) and make use of the other book clubs’ breaks (if anybody is involved in them) to get us into the mood again and to read the first chapter which is a bit longer than the others. Or we could start a bit later.

Let’s have a look at concrete dates. I’ve added the end dates based on an 11-week schedule to give you an idea.

  • Start on Dec 25th (until March 11th)
  • Start on Jan 1st (until March 18th)
  • Start on Jan 8th (until March 25th)
  • Start later (please explain)

0 voters


Just pinging those who showed interest in continuing to read at some point:
@Ditto20 @jhol @valkow
Also pinging @Belerith just in case :grin:

Seems like we are going to continue with Vol. 3 soon! If you are still interested, you can voice your opinion on the start date in the poll above this post. If not - I can understand. :upside_down_face:


Thanks for the ping! I just don’t think I could handle the advanced pace on top of the other clubs :sweat_smile:.

Since the other clubs decided to go on break though, if we start right away I might be able to trick myself into thinking I can do it then fall hopelessly behind later! Are you sure diving in at book 3 is ok?


Any chance that the people who voted for all three options could change their vote to just one or two? :grin:

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That would be super-amazing!

Ahem. I mean the joining part, not the falling behind part :rofl:

Maybe you could try to convince @Jfredel78 to also start right away?
(hah, they showed up before I could even post my ping :rofl: Will change my vote asap)

I’m pretty convinced it should work out fine. This series has the same set of protagonists and environment, but I don’t expect the stories to be connected (at least vol. 1 and 2 were not connected). Of course there has been a little bit of world-building and a little bit of character development so far, but it’s suuuper slow, and I guess the main characters will be introduced again in each book. (Just like e.g. Miss Marple or stories like these, I guess.) And if there’s something that really confuses or surprises you, we’re here to fill you in of course.


Cool! I’ll give it a shot and try to get a week ahead beforehand if we start on the 25th. Again, no promises I’ll be able to stay on timeline. Would somebody be willing to write a quick summary of the characters/world-building while avoiding spoiling major plot points of the first two?

I’ve been watching this club for a while—a good mystery with math and tech elements seems right up my alley.


Yay, that’s great :slight_smile: Yes, if you start straight away you should be able to get the first chapter under your belt (although it is the longest one, sorry for that).

OK let’s see how far I get. I thought about this for a second and I’m not sure whether I’ll get all the details right, but we’ll see.

The world and main characters as I remember them

Saikawa is an academic, his subject is architecture. I think he is something like a postdoc or an assistant professor, from the feels of the description. Not sure whether this got mentioned anywhere. He’s about 35 years old or a bit younger. He’s a chain smoker. Sometimes he puts on airs and comes across pretty arrogant.

Moe is an engineering (?) student, she is the daughter of Saikawa’s former mentor who died together with his wife in a plane crash during landing a few years ago. So Moe is an orphan. She is pretty close to Saikawa as she knows him since childhood. Also, the two went to the airport together to pick up her parents when the plane crashed right in front of their eyes, which added to their bonding.
Due to both her parents having been professors, she is super rich, lives in a ginormous penthouse together with the family butler, drives a fancy sports car and so on. She is also crazy intelligent, can do arithmetic in her head at breakneck speed and stuff. She is about 20 or a bit older.

Moe’s uncle is the chief of the regional police department, and with or without his help, the two somehow get dragged into strange mysteries which they then solve together. It seems to be a pattern that Saikawa somehow figures things out but doesn’t mention anything about his suspicions, which leaves the reader pretty much in the (almost) dark all the time. In the end comes the big revelation of course. Sometimes it’s quite handy that the uncle can help in ways an ordinary person could not, due to his position.

I think it’s safe to say that there are some romantic vibes going on between Saikawa and Moe, but with this being Japan, I don’t expect significant things to happen during, say, the next 5 books or so…

They also have a close friend who played a role in the second volume at least, but I basically forgot most things about him, including his name… He is also in architecture as an assistant professor, and he behaves as if he has a crush on Moe or something.

OK, I hope I did not mess up too many details :joy_cat: Looking forward to hearing your thoughts about our new story!


Thanks for the ping. :eyes:

I was very tempted last week to get the series on kindle for half the price I’d pay for the individual volumes - but my backlog! I’m trying to resist bulk buys.

I’m half tempted to vote ‘later’ so I can maybe join in after tidying up a bit of my ‘currenly reading’ (that is, I’m planning to finish かがみの孤城 and 地球星人 and probably some other book(s) ahead of schedule sometime in January, which would free up a bit of time for another book club again…)

Knowing myself, I’d want to read in order and have a bit of catching up to do though. :joy: So I won’t vote. I’ll think of you over Christmas dinner though! :cheese:


OK, looks like the start date voting dried up, so I’m declaring Dec 25th to be the winner!
(I hope that’s ok for you @Jfredel78? If you cannot start before Jan 8th, I hope you can manage to catch up anyways…)

By the way I can encourage everybody to start reading on Friday (Dec 24th) already - I think it might feel magical to you at some point :relaxed:


Very excited to see that the book starts off at Christmastime! That’s a fun coincidence.

Eeeeh, you spoilerer :joy_cat: I thought it’d be cool if everybody discovered that by themselves :grin:

But yes, I agree, and I was very surprised!


Ahhhh sorry! Well it was indeed magical.


omg, that’s this week :joy: I lose all track of time during long vacations, you see. Thought the 25th was next week, for some reason.

But that’s not to say I’m not ready! >:3


Yeah, well I had a lot of other things planned to read over winter break, but where there’s a will there’s a way. I guess… :sweat_smile:


Well, I bought the books. :upside_down_face:
I’m currently finishing up the books I’ve already started, and then I want to catch up to where 本陣殺人事件 is at.

I’ll be reading S&M in order so it’ll be a while before I’m caught up with you guys anyway. :joy: