[Seeking Nominations!] Beginner Japanese Book Club // Now Reading: この美術部には問題がある!

I believe that the meanings you inferred are what is intended.

However, it’s pretty subjective, which may also be intentional, that we’d want to pick a book most people find to require “minimal effort” or be “just right”. (I don’t have stats to back this up, but I’d wager people are likely to overestimate their abilities or find a short preview a lot less daunting than a 40-page weekly workload)

I’d like to see an analysis, by poll or discussion, about what level of reader a book seems like it would be appropriate for, maybe updating the post with some numbers once we’re mostly in agreement.

There will still be a vote each cycle to decide which book is chosen; this is just a vetting process to make sure we don’t include something on either extreme.


The options mean different things to different people. I think getting overly specific wouldn’t really help at all. The average difficulty should still be useful if we get enough votes for each nomination.


Just joined for Aria - I’m looking forward to reading with everyone!

Do you guys actually think I should keep that “I just like to click polls” option in the difficulty poll template? I hate the idea of keeping it… But I hate even more the idea of people corrupting the average.

Can I suggest that we start a new thread every time we start discussing books for another round? (Not for each book, just for each round.)
Why? This thread is getting really long, which I think would be very off putting for new people who don’t want to spend hours scrolling through stuff which is no longer relevant, or not having it clear what is currently relevant until you get closer to the end.
Solution: We’ve already chosen the Round 3 book, so let’s put all these suggestions and polls into a Beginner Japanese Book Club Round 4 thread, please?

That could have the opposite problem though, where people don’t know which thread to check. Plus, generally we wouldn’t be resetting the nominations each time. This is a special case because we’re trying to clear up the guidelines. Also, that makes it sound like this thread is just for nominations, but it’s also for general book club discussions. I understand your concern, I’m just not sure your suggestion would make things better… (I don’t have a better suggestion though…)

Side comment: I’m curious how you’ll vote on the Scary Stories poll. It felt so easy after spending months reading Kiki.

I think it could work just like the chapter discussions - at the top there is a link to explain the point of that thread relative to the one before and after it. I was happy to discuss the process for nominations in this thread, but honestly not feeling exciting about judging all the nominations now when they are for a book we won’t read for months… unless you are really just trying to set standards for comparison to use moving forward? (You have been the inspiration for me to keep going with Kiki, especially with the vocab list, so I would do it as a favour to you if for no other reason!)

PS Not really a fan of scary stories, but did you know there are other genres in that 5 minute series?

Yeah, it’s a tough situation. This idea is for this to be a permanent thing, not to just set standards. Basically, next time we vote, I want people to be able to see the average difficulty for each book and say “this book seemed interesting, but it has a 4/5 so it’s probably too hard, but this other one has a 2.5/5, so maybe that will work”. It’s also a unique time because we’re starting from scratch. Theoretically, these nominations shouldn’t come in too often, after the first batch is through.

I’m not a fan of horror/scary stuff either so that’s good to know. Do you have a link to some of the others in the series?

Aw, thanks! :blush:
The feeling is mutual! It would be difficult to continue reading without your support and contributions. :slight_smile:



“First in the new series of the popular “unexpected ending after 5 minutes” series. Set in a high school, members of the so-called “worrying department” are very effective in solving problems! 40% excitement, 30% laughs, 30% lessons in life, and 100% surprise ending! 20 stories that you can enjoy anywhere you read.”

Although it takes time to read through, information from publisher websites gives a lot of useful information.
This book is aimed at primary school kids years 4-6.
Big sample if you click on the link 試し読み under 立ち読み about halfway down the page. There is a manga introduction then it starts the actual chapter.

Find more of the series here: シリーズ名検索



I’m unfortunately one of the people who stopped reading Kiki due to it being too difficult. Really hoping this next one goes well.
I’v been skimming through the new messages but there were a lot so I might have missed it. Is there a date for when the new manga will be started, or a poll to decide? (First post says TBD)

Check out the Aria thread. Polls are in the second post.

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Wait, isn’t that what the intermediate book club is reading right now?

Yes it’s in the same series, but not the same book. The beauty about those shorts stories is that there are a ton of them and many of them are accessible. I think they’re designed for junior high school students.

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If it has the same difficulty across the series, that one was so hard I gave up on it completely. I read through the first two stories without even getting the gist of what was going on. There might be a range in difficulty though…I don’t know.

It made Kiki feel easy :wink:

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Hello, I would like to be added to the list, please!

I went to my cart to look at something else, noticed this in my saved items. Did we do this? :wink:


This is gonna lead to a lot of unsold 2-7s from people unable to start the series.

I’m not sure how to feel about that. Like, it’s normal for readership to fall over the course of a publication, but I wonder if things like this have lasting side-effects.

I bought the full set, but ended up with the old version rather than masterpiece.

Just to let readers here know that the Yotsuba Reading Club is about to start volume four if anyone is interested. We could be starting this weekend, depending on the poll result. Thank you!


Could we perhaps limit future books to ones that can be purchased in ebook form? For me personally it means I can’t join in if I can’t buy it digitally. I’m sure there are others like me. Can’t do Aria or Yotsubato. I can do the Kiki one though which is really cool.