Sunday, June 6, 2010

TSS: Japanese Literature Challenge IV



It's time to peruse the stacks and gather your Japanese Literature. The 4th annual Japanese Literature Challenge is underway! According to our gracious hostess, Bellezza, the sole requirement is to read one work of Japanese Literature between now and January 30, 2011. She has created this lovely button, put together an extensive list of reading possibilities, and set up a review site. Now it's time to get started.

Last year I discovered Banana Yoshimoto through her novel Kitchen. This year, I'm looking forward to Goodbye Tsugumi and Hardboiled & Hard Luck.

Also in my stack is After Dark by Haruki Murakami. Murakami has many devotees among challenge participants, and the title has been recommended as a good starting point. I'm anxious to see what this author is all about.

Junichiro Tanizaki's 1948 classic, The Makioka Sisters, is on top of the pile. It had been on my wish list for a few years, and I finally picked up a copy last winter in anticipation of the challenge. So, these are the four title I have on hand, but I'm still considering several others. Have you made your list?



25 comments:

  1. I'm considering reading The Makioka Sisters, but its length and slowness is putting me off at the moment.

    I have After Dark in my TBR pile as well. I can't decide what I should read for my Japanese Challenge list.

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  2. I was introdued to modern Japanese lit by Murakami's After Dark, and have been a fan ever since. I highly recommend it. It was well read for the Japanese Lit Challenge III last year! Looking forward to your reviews of Makioka Sisters. Hadn't heard of that one.

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  3. I promised no challenges this year but am going to take advantage of all these fabulous reading suggestions floating around to make up for some huge deficits in my reading life in the way of Asian lit. And you have just given me more choices for thought! Happy reading!

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  4. Does manga count? :D

    I've been meaning to read some more Japanese literature. Something by a female author - I just checked my 2010 stats and my genderfail has not abated. I did read part of The Tale of Genji awhile ago and loved it.

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  5. JoAnn, so glad that you're in! I loved After Dark, my first official Murakami novel which made me a fan of his for life.

    One of my dear friends just bought Banana Yoshimoto's Asleep for me, and I'm looking forward to that. Kitchen was so interesting.

    Well, we'll have a wonderful time together, and I thank you for posting about this challenge which is dear to my heart (as well as its participants!).

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  6. p.s. E.L. Fay, manga is allowed. Any work of Japanese origin is the goal. ;)

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  7. I so loved Goodbye Tsugumi! I hope you do too.

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  8. I have some Soseki Natsume and Jun'ichiro Tanizaki lined up for starters, and I suspect that H. Murakami, Mishima and Kawabata will be making an appearance on my blog at some point over the enxt few months ;)

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  9. This sounds like a great challenge, but no new ones for me (willpower) :)

    How is the new dog doing?

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  10. I have The Makioka Sisters on hold at the library. Maybe I should join in? I hope everything is going well with Zelda.

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  11. Great lists of reads-I read them all during JL3 and loved each one-if you can try to add one of Kenzaburo Oe's early books to your list-Maybe Save Us From Our Madness -I will look forward to your reactions to these books

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  12. I have a nice stack of Japanese fiction in my TBR bookcase. . . I really must get to it soon! Hopefully I'll be inspired this summer. I have Kitchen plus a few Murakami.

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  13. You've got some good books chosen for this challenge--can't wait for your reviews!

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  14. Jackie - There are so many titles to choose from, and if you've read as little Japanese Lit as I have, it makes it even harder to decide!

    Book Bird Dog - I bought After Dark for last year's challenge, then started reading Banana Yoshimoto instead. This year, for sure.

    Frances - I made a 'no challenges' rule this year, too, but had to break it for this one (and probably Once Upon a Time in the fall).

    E.L. Fay - I think manga counted last year. Why not join in??

    Bellezza - I'm so glad you're hosting the challenge again. Even though I made a 'no challenge' promise this year, I had to make an exception here!

    Nymeth - I think it was your review that caused me to add this to my list!

    Tony - Will be looking forward to your reviews!

    Diane - Such willpower! Zelda had an emergency trip to the vets on Sunday - 'hemmoraghic gastroenteritis'. IV hydration, tests, meds, then home with antibiotics and orders for bland diet (boiled chicken and rice). Thankfully, she's on the mend and almost back to her old self.

    Gavin - I'd love it if you joined in! Zelda had a tough weekend (see my comment to Diane above), but is much better today.

    Mel U - Oe will be where I turn next when (if?) I finish the stack!

    Karenlibrarian - The reviews posted at the challenge site always inspire me!

    Reviewsbylola - I'm looking forward to getting started!

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  15. Joanne....My SIL feeds her rescue ground chicken and rice with a side of high quality hard food twice a day. the vet says it's the best thing for dogs. only treats are raw carrot pieces and occasional dog biscuts.

    so glad Zelda is better!!

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  16. I've joined the challenge for the first time. I'm very ignorant of Japanese literature and I thought this would be a fun way to remedy that. I liked your review of Kitchen so I'm going to start with that. I'm going to pay closer attention to your reviews this year as I want to read a few more.

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  17. Diane - Tomorrow I'll start adding back the side of dog food. This is something we're probably going to need to keep a close eye on. Greyhounds seem to have sensitive digestive systems anyway... may end up going the same route as your SIL.

    Margot - I'm so glad you're joining and that you liked the review of Kitchen! I don't think I'd ever read a Japanese novel before that. It's a great challenge... really broadens your reading horizons.

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  18. I've been wanting to read After Dark for some time. I'm not usually a big challenge person but this sounds like fun.

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  19. I may have to join this one -- I haven't read much Japanese literature in the last few years. I used to enjoy it.

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  20. E.L. Fay - Come on and join! It's the perfect excuse to read AFter Dark.... and Bellezza says manga counts, too!

    Beth F - It's just one book... what's one more challenge? ;-)

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  21. Thankyou for posting this, I have a couple of Japanese books on my wish list so this challenge will not be a problem for me.

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  22. Hi, I like your choices for JLC4. After Dark was one of my first and I'm addicted now... Makioka Sisters sounds great, but way too long for me, but I might look up your other author. Thanks for the idea's, and hope to see you round soon.

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  23. Jessica - Glad to see you joined the challenge, too

    Tamara - I'll look forward to your JLC4 reviews. It'll be interesting to see how I do with The Makioka Sisters... May need a break in Paris ;-)

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  24. I read Goodbye, Tsugumi for Bellezza's last challenge and really enjoyed it. I hope you do, too! If I join I plan on reading some more Murikami. Loved his Kafka on the Shore!

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  25. Trish - Oh good.. you liked Goodbye Tsugumi! Will keep Kafka on the Shore in mind, too. Thanks.

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