You’re Invited!

What: The Japanese Literature Challenge

 

When: November 30, 2007 until January 30, 2008

How: Read three pieces of Japanese Literature, from any genre, and post your opinions on your blog.

 

Why: It will be fun to learn about new authors, and new pieces of literature, from each other.

RSVP in the comments, and I will link your name under the Japanese Literature button in my sidebar.

 

Prizes: I’ve been folding paper for days, and putting together little things to fit into the theme. They are as follows:


The first place prize includes the following: the newly released, hardbound edition of The Street of A Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama (which I just found at Barnes and Noble), a paper crane, a ball, a box with lid, a star box, a jar with tiny puffy stars, a fan from Japan, and a Japanese Cherry Blossom body cream.

The second place prize includes: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman by Haruki Murakami, a paper crane, a box with lid, a book mark from Japan, a jar of tiny puffy stars, and a set of star folding paper for you to try the stars yourself. (Don’t worry, the directions are on the back, and they’re easy!)


The third place prize is: a hardbound edition of Tales of Moonlight and Rain, a paper crane and a little book I folded, and a notebook from Japan.

I hope you join in the adventure. I’m looking forward to a great time together.

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59 thoughts on “You’re Invited!”

  1. What a lovely challenge you've created! I love all the prizes (and hope to read Tsukiyama's latest in the near future), but alas, I'm going to pass on this challenge. I've been feeling overwhelmed with my current challenges and have decided to simplify my reading schedule this winter and give up those I've already signed up for. I'll look forward to reading everyone's reviews, however, and suspect I'll add several new titles to my TBR list. 😉

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  2. (I'm at school now, illicitly checking my blog, and noticed that the picture for prize package 3 doesn't show. I'll remedy that if it is indeed a problem.)Chris, I'm hoping you can explain Murakami to me. 🙂 I'm glad you like the prizes; I tried not to make them too girlie. It's going to be great discussing Snow on Mt. Fuji. Thanks for encouraging me to host this!Carl, I'm glad you approve of the prize packs too. Does this mean you'll consider joining? Did you notice I listed some sci-fi/fantasy type works in the previous post keeping you in mind?Les, I so understand needing to cut down on what we've committed to read. Still, poop! I would love to have discussed these with you. Another time, maybe in 09? 🙂 By the way, I just finished Up Island by Anne Rivers Siddons, and it was not my favorite work of hers.3M, hooray! I'm so glad you're in!

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  3. Thanks for understanding! Sorry you didn't enjoy Up Island. I didn't really, either.I see one of my dearest friends has posted a comment. Nan and I have been friends for over 10 years now. We've never met, but I feel like I know her better than some of my face-to-face friends and relatives. She's a dear!

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  4. I've already said no to this challenge on Chris' site just because I have so much to read, but I will at least consider it. You certainly have tempting prizes and there are some Japanese authors that a friend of mine loves and would love to see me read.

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  5. Les, have you been blogging for ten years?! How did you meet Nan? That would be a great story, I'm sure. We're only just newly acquainted, but she seems like a lovely person indeed.Carl, I think you have your hands full with the challenges you've taken on. It wouldn't be good to feel overwhelmed by reading when it's supposed to be our joy.

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  6. Oh my goodness, no. I've only been blogging a year or so. We met through an online book group years ago. That group is no longer in existence, but Nan and I have remained very good friends through the years. She's like a sister to me.

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  7. Thanks so much for inviting me to this challenge Bellezza… I'm going to have to turn down your nice invite though for the following reasons1. I'm insanely busy leading a team of people from Korea to Sri Lanka for three weeks slap bang in the middle of this challenge which will pretty much rule out all my free time. 2. Having lived 6 years in Japan, it makes me too homesick to read too much about it.3. I'm scared that I might win a Murakami book and thereby feel obliged to read an author I can't stand ;-)All the best with it though… …and if anyone wants a moving piece of fiction to read for this challenge, my recommendation would be Silence by Shusako Endo

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  8. Arukiyomi, I just read Wonderful Fool by Shusako Endo and I can't stop thinking about it. It was a powerfully moving work to me. I'm planning to pick up Silence, too, and then hopefully I could discuss it with you. Also, I thought I was the only one who is having trouble with Murakami; not that you're having trouble. You probably understand him, and can therefore say you can't stand him legitimately.It must have been wonderful living in Japan. I know I loved the years that I lived in Europe.

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  9. I'm so glad, Stephanie. I'll add your link to the list on my sidebar. I'm looking forward to seeing what you pick If you need any ideas, check the previous post. Or, other people's links. There are some great choices available!

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  10. Thanks so much for your kind invitation to join your Japanese challenge. It looks really wonderful and I know next to nothing about Japanese literature. However, I will content myself with "looking over your shoulder" for this year. Maybe in 2009. Your prizes look fabulous. So delicate and pretty. Good luck with this and I'll look forward to reading updates.

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  11. Kay, I'm glad you liked the prizes. Thanks for giving it your consideration.California Teacher Guy, would you agree to reading at least one? I'm dying to know your opinions on Endo's "Wonderful Fool." It's fairly short, easy, and VERY powerful to me. Not to twist your arm or anything. 🙂

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  12. I'm so glad, tanabata, because I was sure they'd pale in comparison to what you can find in Japan itself. I do use paper from Asia (usually the star folding paper is from China, actually) but it's so hard to get here in Illinois! Remind me to tell you the story one time of all the paper I bought on eBay, not paying any attention to shipping charges from Hong Kong until it was too late. Anyway, I'm glad you like the prizes. I do love folding origami…

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  13. What a fun challenge you've put together! Sitting next to me is the book, Wild Swan, that my mother is dying for me to read. I hoped it might count but drats, it is Chinese. I think this is a great idea. I just might need an extension, though, since I'm finishing up a final project for a class and have to get through my book club list. Can we keep it revved up in Jan?This comment is from a nonBlogger, with a link only back to my site via my inserting it in this place by handwriting the coding MotherPie which is a real hassle.'Blogging has stimulated conversation but Blogger, by altering the commenting structure, has limited comments only to Google's bloggers using the Blogger platform. Crummy move, Google/Blogger.

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  14. Okay, California Teacher Guy, I'll buy you an Ace bandage for Christmas. :)Mother pie, I'm not sure what's going on with Blogger, but I'm glad you were at least able to leave a comment. Let me know if there are any more troubles, and we'll figure something out.Robin, hooray! I'm so glad you're joining! I'm going to add you to the side bar now.

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  15. Your prizes are things you truly do see here. Sure there are lots more of them here but your prizes do look authentic! :)So how much did you pay for shipping?? As for Murakami, if it makes you feel any better I think it wasn't until the 4th book of his I read that I finally got into his style. I had kind of given up after the first 2 but a friend loves him and encouraged me to read him again. And so far I haven't really loved his short stories, just tried one collection, but I'm trying again for the challenge. 🙂

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  16. Well, I was clicking "buy", "buy", "buy," every time I saw a beautiful strip of folding papers because they were a.) beautiful and b.) about $2.50 a pack. I bought about ten packages, and the shipping brought my total to over $50.00. Stupid me. Still, I can't find paper like that here.I've read only four short stories from Murikami's Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman. They are wonderful portrayals of daily life, but so far I'm at a loss as to how to explain the deeper meaning. Maybe there is no deeper meaning? I'm not sure. I'll have to read more of them, and certainly discuss more of them, during this challenge.It's so fun to see people becoming interested! I'm really glad you're doing this, tanabata.

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  17. Lulu, I'm so glad you're joining in. I've added you to the links under the button, and I can't wait to see what you've chosen to read. Thanks for participating!

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  18. I just found this while (book) bloghopping. I'd like to join but I've to assess my bookshelf first. I know I've been itching to finish the rest of my Murakamis (four unread as far as I know) but by then my list might end up like a Murakami Reading List instead of uhm, Japanese Literature Challenge. If I can find the slim Yoshimoto then I'll sign up before the week ends. I'm sure I'll be able to finish off Murakami before the deadline ends. I love the guy.And gee, I was poring over my origami book earlier and it was fun to see this blog/post featuring lovely photos of origami!

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  19. Lightheaded, there's no reason you couldn't make it a Murakami Reading Challenge; then you could explain some of his short stories to me. Whatever you decide, you're so welcome to join in, even if it's "just" in the commenting as some bloggers have opted to do. I'm glad you like the origami, and I'm glad you hopped on over.

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  20. BOOKFOOL: If you're reading this, I hope you consider joining. I didn't post that idea on your blog because I was afraid of pressuring you on your return, but just so you know, I'd love your input if you're so inclined. XO Bellezza

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  21. I hope I'm not too late to sign up for the Challange. I've never done one before, but this one was so tempting I thought, "why not? I'm up for a reading adventure!"I've posted my list on my book blog here: http://seaofbooks.blogspot.com/I choose one that wasn't on your list because I already owned it. I hope that's ok. Thanks! ~ Lauren

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  22. Lauren, wecome! How fun to have you join us! Please choose whatever you wish; I'm coming to see your list now because I love taking note of what everyone's reading. I'll add you to the links under my button, too.

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  23. Count me in! I saw this on So Many Books. After my dismal performance on the reading section of my JLPT, I have decided to read more Japanese literature and writing. Perfect timing.Do I have to post a list or can I just pick things one by one and write them up as I read?

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  24. Welcome! You do not have to post a list; feel free to write about what you read as you've read it. I'm so glad you're joining us, and I'll post your blog on the links under my button. (Except, how do I write your name?:)

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  25. Bikkuri, Verbivore, Scott, this is happy news! Three more of you to add to the Challenge. I'm glad you're all on board, and I look forward to your reviews. Could it be possible that the person who's learning the most here is me? I think so!

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  26. Well, I thought I'd give you an update. Here are the books I've decided to read:Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata The Woman in The Dunes by Kobo AbeThe Setting Sun by Osamu DazaiI'm three quarters through Snow Country and am enjoying it immensely.Thanks for prodding me to branch out like this, Bellezza.cjh

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  27. Thanks for branching, cj. I CAN'T WAIT to hear about The Woman in The Dunes. That book sounded absolutely fascinating when I read about it as I tried to entice people with their options. Perhaps you'll like to see the film, too, after reading it. I hear they are both very good. It'll be fun to discuss Kawabata; I'm reading First Snow on Mount Fuji. Thanks for the update! I'll be by to visit.

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  28. I just came across this from So Many Books Blog, and I'd love to join but haven't the time. Instead I'd love to offer a few suggestions from those I read last year. Naomi by Junichiro Tanizaki was one of my favorite books I read all year. The characters are really rich and demand a vast number of emotions from the reader. Kokoro by Natsume Sōseki was also really good and very enlightening. The Tale of Genji (I read the abridged) is a classic, and with good reason! Hugely complex in emotions, and supremely insightful!Next time, I'm in!

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  29. Oh, my – I hope you're still blogging! I'm reading a ton of Japanese books (mostly history, but Tanizaki's two novels, an anthology of Japanese literature, and Totto chan) this month. I'll pop back by. Meanwhile, if you'd care to visit, I keep my yearly book list and reviews here.

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