Alright then, I suppose I shall make a thread about it and see who’s interested. I’m fine with No.6, its only about 224 pgs it looks like. I’ve never attempted to read it however, so I’m unaware of its difficultly.
@Dwarsen Yeah I think there was, but I don’t think it was necessarily a 'lets chose a book to read together ’ kind of thread.
Yeah, I’m very unsure on what makes something a light novel as opposed to a novel. Are they like the equivalent of YA novels (edit: I’m also unclear how that gets decided)? I have a kind of instinctive dislike of them based on nothing other than finding ‘ranobe’ a very ugly word. But then, is キノの旅 a light novel? Cause I love that.
Yeah, キノの旅 is a light novel. I guess the closest equivalent is young adult fiction, but I feel there’s a bit more to it than that. Are YAs serialised? There’s such a huge swath of available light novels, there’s bound to be stuff everyone likes…
Not in the way light novels seem to be. I think the best way to describe light novels is by their serial nature. They’re basically short affordable books, usually comparable in price to manga tankobons, and they’re serialized similarly to manga.
It’s not a requirement, I own one that isn’t. And yeah, No 6 is a light novel, I actually just assumed it was a “regular” novel at first based on…nothing in particular. But when I looked it up it sure seems like one!
Just in my own experience I’ve come across significantly more light novels that are more difficult than “regular” novels. I think the thing with regular, contemporary Japanese novels is the style to me tends to run minimalist. A lot of it is ridiculously easy (and…ha dry) to read. I’d recommend any Murakami or Yoshimoto work over something like Baccano or Log Horizon or most fantasy/sci-fi light novel series for example.
But overall it of course comes down to genre. Light novels run the gambit of a crap ton of genres including a lot of fantasy/sci-fi but I’ve found the breadth of big fantasy/sci-fi “regular” novels to be much less.
haha ok I know I’m writing quite a bit but this is something I think about a lot because I frankly find it hard to discover good sci-fi/fantasy books in Japanese. I love light novels so I don’t mind but seriously, translated works are king in that domain ; ~ ;
So No.6 and キノの旅 are sci-fi books I like to recommend because they’re such gentle (from a learner’s perspective) but interesting novels. Finding others depends on your interests. The way the west can categorize light novels versus how Japan does can be a wee different. When you look it up you’re gonna find a lot of the generic male-high-school-aged-protagonist-one-million-girls stuff because that is the image of what a light novel is. Slice of life ones are very easy to read because normal Japanese if you want a starting point
I like to browse the genres of Amazon JP and more book focused sites like Honto (Honto’s Light Novel section: here) for new stuff. The storefronts, recommended books, and top rankings always change! And I love using Booklog for logging, organization and finding new things. I took time to just search around things like 「おすすめのライトノベル」+ genres too. Naver results will probably pop up a lot because lists everywhere haha It is easier for me personally because I’m into a specific genre (BL) that already has a huge database/rating/discussion site for its literature because it has a lot of genres within itself but I haven’t found anything else like it for others (for those who also like BL, it’s called ちるちる)
But again searching “ライトノベル” most likely won’t yield you things like No.6 because they don’t get categorized under that or won’t normally pop up under it even when they seem like it. A lot of these books you’ll find easier under just plain old “小説”.
If you want to look through English things, honestly I still love baka-updates. I’ve found that it still logs a lot of things even if they aren’t translated and being able to filter search by multiple tags/genres in its advanced search is pretty dope. Its tag dictionary is massive and has everything. I’ve also found its forums to have nice threads about what novels people like in Japanese too.
My method isn’t 100% scientific, but when I went to Japan this spring I went to a bookstore and just bought whatever seemed interesting to me, mostly the original works for anime I had already watched and enjoyed (yes I’m the trash that’s killing the anime industry).
BTW, for those of us who are at much lower levels, I still recommend some of the light novel series aimed at primary school kids.
Since I’m into sci-fi/fantasy, a bunch of the ones I originally bought are too hard for me to read comfortably , but yeah, the slice of life ones are great.
I mean, it’s hardly the most riveting reading material, but the 「パティシエ☆すばる」series is extremely readable, even for me. As you’d expect it’s about kids being kids, but also, sweets and baking?! It’s all very cute and enjoyable if you like that sort of thing.
I don’t mind those walls of text, if anything it makes me feel better about my own tendency write them
If I ever either make it through the entirety of No 6 or decide it’s time for something else I’ll have a look at the recommendations! A friend of mine also can’t recommend Baccano enough, incidentally.
I’m not really a big reader in any language, but when I do it I tend to really enjoy getting drawn into a book. Since I think it’s probably the single best thing I can do to improve my (written) language comprehension I hope to be able to stick with it!
All right, just thought it’d be fun to chat a bit If you want, you can always add me on facebook (same username). Or not, your choice
Also, I like how Discourse is complaining that I’ve replied to you too many times and that I should consider “sending a private message instead”. @viet or someone might want to fix that since WK doesn’t allow PMs