Japanese reading report

This week I read a little more of 蒲団 and ended up deciding to drop it. It ended up being more difficult than I wanted to deal with…not impossible by any means, just not very fun to read. The Aozora Bunko text helpfully has a lot of furigana so the weird kanji usage wasn’t a problem, and the grammar is definitely not kobun level, but it just felt like a slog for some reason. I made it most of the way through chapter 2 before quitting. Will probably revisit it sometime in the future but not right now.

In need of another novel to take my 11th slot for the year I decided to pick up something new by 恒川光太郎, and some of his books happened to be on sale so I grabbed two of them. I read the first chapter of 南の子供が夜いくところ, which seems like it’s going to be another long-form work rather than a collection of short stories, but also (from the beginning of chapter 2) seems to feature multiple perspectives; the first chapter was largely in third person but started using ぼく for some exposition at the end, and the next chapter started with 私. So far the story has followed a boy whose parents were going to involve him in a 一家心中 (an interesting word to learn) due to paralyzing debt, until they were offered a way out by a somewhat suspicious woman who has now taken the boy to live on an island with a bunch of other kids. He’s started having weird dreams and it seems that the lines of reality are going to get blurry from here on.

I also read 無能なナナ vol. 5 and 6. It seems like we’re in for another genre break and Nana’s character arc has gotten pretty intense. I already bought the next volume and I’m almost out of new ones to buy.

My third manga this week was ミステリと言う勿れ, which is a josei series that’s apparently gotten explosively popular recently (over a million sold per volume and the latest release was at the top of the manga charts for a while) and yet is somehow flying under the radar because well…nobody seems to cares about josei manga. It was really really good. Just two (long) chapters in the entire 単行本 and both of them are basically one-room character dramas driven by the main character’s knack for perception and his unconventional way of looking at scenarios. It’s funny and tense and has very effective character development. I got a few of them for free a while ago so I’ll be continuing for sure.

I finished the last few episodes of Fate/stay night (unlimited blade works) and I guess I’m not sure if I’m supposed to track down a sequel or what. The last 2/3 of the last episode seemed really weird, introducing new characters, establishing some new stakes and whatnot.

Finally, I started watching 虚構推理 yesterday and just finished it today. Quite enjoyed it and I’m pleased to hear that there’s a season 2 planned, though I’ll probably end up reading the manga or the novels before it airs (need to figure out how exactly the books work beforehand). It’s not a bad thing by any means, but there are lots of sections where you can just tell that this was originally a novel. The monologues are truly something.