BOUJEE BOOKTUBER TAG | how I value books (and manga)

Check out my latest video.

 

Created by: ABookOlive https://youtu.be/lpbnPj0B9XU

I was tagged to do this by SuesBookNook https://youtu.be/HkLMWrPRBvw

The Boujee Booktuber Tag
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–THE QUESTIONS–
1. What is your average monthly budget for books?
2. What’s the most you’ve ever spent in a bookstore?
3. Are you willing to pay full price for a brand new release, or will you wait until you have a coupon or there’s a sale?
4. Would you rather buy one new book or several less expensive used copies?
5. What do you think is a reasonable price for a new hardback book? A paperback? An eBook?
6. Is a signed book worth more to you? How about a first edition?
7. What is your most valuable book (sentimental or actual value)?
8. Will you pay more for a cover or edition you like better?
9. What physical characteristics does a good quality book have?
10. If you won the lottery, what bookish things would you do with the money?
BONUS: Give us an image (actual or mental) of your dream home library!

 

Note: description contains affiliate links

Help this hoarder afford to buy manga! I earn a small commission if you click the affiliate link below before purchasing your own manga at your favourite vendors.
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Rightstuf: https://bit.ly/2pW6bHX
Amazon.ca: https://amzn.to/2CUmgGj
Amazon.com: https://amzn.to/2WAm4D6

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Book Haul… whoo

A colleague of mine discovered that there was a big book sale being held just a few minute drive from our office, so we decided to venture over after work one day this week. It was one of those big “library sale” type charity sales with tons of tables, thousands of books, and just about as many readers looking for a deal. Unfortunately I wasn’t savvy enough to remember to take pictures or video of the experience. But, I should at least be able to show you the spoils!

I went, of course, in hopes that I’d find some manga. I didn’t. That was disappointing. But, I did find 1 graphic novel:

“The Sculptor” by Scott McCleod. I hate to say that the only graphic novel I’ve read by this creator is still his non-fiction title about comic books and graphic novels “Understanding Comics”. I’ve been wanting to read anything else of his since… and that was probably over a decade ago. This is one I’ve heard great things about, and it was in perfect condition. Plus, I only paid about $2 for it which, frankly, is a steal! I couldn’t pass it up!

20190502_191741b

I’m participating in a graphic novel readathon, called PanelAThon, at the end of the month which this is a good candidate for. Although, now that I think about it… I might also have about 50 holds at the library for other graphic novels I’m currently interested in reading…

Did I mention that I’m in the mood to read right now?? This is a phenomena I haven’t experienced in a few years. I really don’t feel like doing anything else. I just want to read. I want to read everything. And, I want to read it all right now. I think this is the form that my mid-life crisis is going to be taking… I guess it could be worse!

I did get a handful of Japanese art and language books as well. They aren’t the most current books (At least the art books aren’t), but they are actually all really intriguing… at least, if you’re an art nerd like me.

I broke up a nice looking “Art of the World” series that had several books focusing on different cultures for this one on Japan. There’s quite a lot of colour plates in this book, and there seems to actually be a decent amount of text, so I’m hopeful to learn something new.

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“Japanese Art” and “Oriental Lacquer” both feature a lot of full colour plates, which is very gratifying. There’s a lot less text in the Lacquer book, and it focuses more generally on East Asia, particularly Chinese lacquer. I think if neither have enough good information in them, they’ll still be pretty nice to cut up and use in paper crafts…

The Japanese language book “Jazz Up Your Japanese with Onomatopoeia” by Hiroki Fukuda is actually a book I’ve been wanting to own, but I believe the last time I looked on amazon, it was out of print. This particular series of Kodansha language books are my absolute favourite English-to-Japanese language resources.

Lastly, I bought three, kind of, wild cards: “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck. I have read MOST of “East of Eden” and have been hoping to read more by this author. Actually, I had no idea that this book was as long as it is. It, like “The Sculptor” is in perfect condition. It doesn’t look like it’s been read, and it hasn’t yellowed at all, so I figured it would do alright on my shelves.

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“The Cosy Tea Shop in the Castle” by Caroline Roberts is probably the most outside my wheelhouse in this haul. I just wanted something random, and silly… and the plot of this sounds like just that. A girl opens a tea shop in a castle which has a very grumpy owner/Lord… who she will sweeten up by the charm of her cupcakes (not a euphemism). Haha. I can’t even. It sounds so corny. I love it. I expect I’ll give it a quick read before it gets a new home.

The last is the most unique title “What We  See When We Read” by Peter Mendelsund. It is a mix of text and illustrations, and appears to be an examination of the reading experience. How do people read? What influences their experience reading? Why does someone see different things in books? If it’s as good as I hope, then it will be a fascinating experience. Sometimes these more “philosophical” examinations of experience are just a bunch of gibberish. I’m crossing my fingers for this one!

So, that’s it. It only cost me about $25 (Canadian), which is fantastic! Especially considering that May is often my most expensive month.

I’m actually expecting to go to another similar sale next week and am expecting many more comics. I’ve also got an order in at Book Outlet for more books…not manga.

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I’m excited about all this new reading I’m going to be doing.

So, of course I can’t end this without a little question:

What is the last book (not manga) that you bought and are really excited to read?

I’m Back!

I used to be better at blogging, but now that I also make YouTube videos, I’m having a hard time managing my time between the two.

So, I’m back. I plan to be back anyways. Content is going to be a bit short and sweet for a while, as I get back into the rhythm of posting. But, expect to see more posts here going forward…

Manga & Books Haul : End of December

I got books!

Not only did I get tons of books for Christmas (because my family knows what I like), I also bought quite a few unique titles at the end of 2018. Knowing how small my budget was going to be this year, and also getting a head start on my “1001 Comics Collecting Project“, I did decide to pick up some last minute titles before the year began. I don’t think I’ve been so excited about so many books in my hauls before:

  • Battle Royale / by Koushun Takami
  • Citizen 13660 / by Mine Okubo
  • Comics Versus Art / by Bart Beaty
  • Convenience Store Woman / by Sayaka Murata
  • Doing Time / by Kazuichi Hanawa
  • Even a Monkey Can Draw Manga / by Koji Aihara and Kentaro Takekuma
  • Fashion Forecasts / by Yumi Sakugawa
  • A History of Japanese Art: From Prehistory to the Taisho Period / by Noritake Tsuda
  • Megane Collection: The Bespectacled Gentlemen Collection, vol. 1-5 / by Shin Kawamaru
  • Megane Sensei + Kiss / by Shin Kawamaru
  • Nothing Whatsoever All Out in the Open / by Akiyo Kondo
  • RG Veda, volume 3 / by CLAMP
  • The Butler is King / by Nana Shiiba
  • The Complete Fairy Tales of Oscar Wilde / illustrated by Yuko Shimizu
  • The Guest Cat / by Takashi Hiraide
  • The Rig Veda / translated by Wendy Doniger
  • The Tale of Genji / by Murasaki Shikibu
  • VÉRITÉ / by various
  • Yokai Stories / by Zack Davisson and Eleanora D’Onofrio
  • バレエ・リュス / by 桜沢エリカ [Barei Ryusu / by Sakurazawa Erica]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2019 Manga Reading & Collecting Project

In my goals I mentioned one of the ways I was going to construct my TBR over the year – and part of that was to include at least 1 book mentioned in the “1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die” book, edited by Paul Gravett.

1001 comicsNow, this book encompasses a lot more comics than it does manga, but it goes much further than your standard list of “comics to read” list by including over 150 books by Japanese authors (not all manga). Most of which are or have been available in English.

At the base level of my goals, the plan for this year is to read at least one book mentioned in it every month. But more than that, I want to be actively collecting and reading what I can until I reach the end of my project, even beyond 2019.

To pick what I will read over the year, I am using a TBR jar. Hopefully this will help me focus on the titles specifically for this project. I’m not only reading manga from this book, but it is certainly going to be front and center.

Picking what I buy will be a bit more difficult. I’ve already placed a rather embarrassing order through a number of online second hand vendors… partly because I knew my budget for this year was going to be quite a bit tighter. Going forward into 2019, I’m going to have to be more strategic in how and when I pick up the remaining titles. But, at least at this point I have a large collection to work from!

I do have a longish video up on YouTube about this project where I list:

  • All of the books I own completely, and have read
  • All of the books I own completely, and have started reading
  • All of the series I don’t own completely, but can begin reading some of
  • And, All of the series I don’t own completely, but can’t read any until I buy more

For some reason that just worked to divide the titles up that way! I didn’t include a list of titles that exist in English, but I have not collected yet.

If you want a complete list of the titles, I’d recommend picking the book up for yourself, or checking out Paul Gravett’s website: (http://www.paulgravett.com/1001_comics/index/). He provides a list, but you only get the text descriptions in the book.

I’m looking forward to a very good year of reading!

 

Manga Reading Plans for 2019

Another new year has begun, and another year to neglect this blog!! ^ ^

But, seriously.

I am hoping to make a little more content over here, and I have a few plans to do that over the course of the year. I like to make myself a ton of New Year’s goals, because I know that the more goals I have, the more likely I’ll accomplish one of them. Let’s hope that “posting more regularly on my blog” is one of them.

In addition to that, I have a few goals which may affect what I post on this blog, so let’s look at them:

ONE. READ 500 VOLUMES

I’ve set my GoodReads goal to 500 books, but I’m actually expecting to read more than that. I’m not counting prose nor comics in this total, but I am expecting to read some. I want this 500 books goal to be comprised entirely of manga. I’ve had a bit of a slow start already, but am anticipating more free time to read this year. Last year I read about 420 manga. This year will be a bit of a stretch, but I’ve done it in the past, and I know I can do it again.

TWO. PICK A MONTHLY TBR

I’ve got a bunch of reading plans which require me to do a little bit of more structured reading. I can, of course, still pick what I want to read but, every month I am going to create a TBR (to be read) pile that I’d like to accomplish.

The categories I’ll be using to construct this TBR every month are:

  1. At least 1 title from the “1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die” book
  2. At least 4 titles from my #readmanga19 challenge. This includes a combination of prompts and reading books that start with certain letters of the alphabet. (you can find a description of this challenge in the drop-down menu above)
  3. At least 1 title from “the Closet” (this is where we store all of our BL/yaoi/yuri and box set manga… I don’t pay enough attention to this part of the collection).
  4. At least 1 title from the “Oversize Shelf” (this is where most of our gekiga and alternative manga live. Again it is fairly ignored).
  5. At least 1 title from my single issues collection
  6. And, Only 1 title from my list of OOP (out of print) releases that I finally finished collecting last year.

The point in making a TBR is partly so that I pick up a variety of different things, but it’s also to give me a focus to talk about. I’m turning some of these categories, like the #readmanga19, into video series on YouTube, but I’m hoping to talk about all of my TBR related reading both here and on my channel.

THREE. REDUCE MY MANGA SPENDING!

This may or may not affect what you see on this blog. I’m still going to be spending a lot of money on manga, but my budget is, in effect, being cut in half for the next year. I’m saving for a few personal projects, and also repaying some debt accrued from taking classes.

I’ve actually decided to take a break from university (and any other payed-for classes) for the next year, to help me pay off the debt from frequently taking classes. This is a VERY new thing for me: I don’t think I’ve ever been out of school for more than a couple months at a time in over 35 years! Ack!

What will I do with all this free time?!

I’m assuming the answer is “read” and maybe even “blog”. So, I have a little less money to play with, but I have a lot more free time. That in itself should make a huge difference for this hobby…probably.

I, of course, have a bunch of other goals for the year, but these are the three big ones that will affect this space.

Even though it feels a bit late to say:

I hope everyone has a kind, peaceful, and joyous 2019!

And, a fantastic year of discovering new manga!

Happy New Year!!

Quick Thoughts On: A Proper Wife by Chikae Ide

A Proper WifeA Proper Wife by Chikae Ide

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I loved Chikae Ide’s artwork. There were so many large splash pages that are just begging to be coloured… even though this is obviously not a colouring book. Everything is so crisp and clear! Plus, I am so pleased with the constant barrage of flowery backdrops!

As for the plot, it was short, and very undeveloped compared to most other shoujo/josei manga I’ve read. But compared to other Harlequin manga, it has one of the stronger stories. It was light, fast-paced and completely ridiculous. I had a lot of fun reading it!

Thanks to NetGalley for providing a digital copy for review.

*Originally posted on GoodReads

Quick Thoughts On: A Girl Called Echo, volume 2 by Katherena Vermette

Red River Resistance

Red River Resistance by Katherena Vermette

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


This title is an absolute must for any school library or public library in Canada. With the 150th anniversary of the Red River resistance occurring in 2019, and the major focus of the Canadian government on reconciliation, this comic couldn’t have come at a better time. I am so pleased to be finding so many new comics and graphic novels by indigenous creators, and the fact that is title focuses on Métis history is fantastic!

This title is the second in a series about a young Métis girl, Echo, who finds herself in some sort of foster care. While there she is attending high school and “experiencing” the history of the past, most notably the events surrounding the controversial and tumultuous Red River resistance.

I did read the first volume of this series, and I was very excited about this next installment. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite live up to my expectations. I think my main problem is that this seems to be focusing on telling the story of the Red River resistance very quickly, but in doing so, it has forgotten to develop the characters. It also takes for granted that you have some background in this history.

Sadly, this means that the characters are little more than shells. Even the main character, Echo has less than a personality. I feel like she was beginning to be explored in the first volume, but her personality just fell flat in this one. There is so much more that could be done with this story without exaggerating or undermining the important history that is being explored. I wanted so much more!

Because of this, I feel like it’ll lose some of its audience. This comes off more as an educational work, and less as something to pick up for pleasure. However, as an educational work it is invaluable, and would do very well to be included as supplemental material in Canadian elementary and high school classrooms.

Thanks to NetGalley for providing a digital copy for review.



View all my GoodReads reviews

24 Hour Manga Readathon : Tezuka’s 90th Birthday Edition | #24HRTezuka

Surprise! We decided to host a quick 24-hour readathon on what would be Osamu Tezuka’s 90th birthday (affectionately known as the “godfather of manga”).  Join us on Saturday, November 3rd to read as much manga as you can in the span of 24-hours!

We encourage anyone to participate. The only goal of this readathon is to read manga sometime during the day. We know not everyone will be able to read for the full 24-hours with us, but we hope that if you have a few hours to spend during the day, you’ll spend that time reading manga (and hanging out with us on social media, of course).

*We’ve invited Shae from YouTube/Instagram to help us plan and host this readathon. Please go and follower her on YT and Instagram. Thanks so much for joining us Shae!

Watch the host’s videos on YouTube for all of the details:


Please note: we do not support the reading of scans/scanlations/illegal or fan translations. Please help us support the industry by ONLY reading legally licensed/published/distributed manga for this readathon. Thank you. 


READING CHALLENGES:

The reading challenges are completely optional, they are just here to help you pick books to read if you don’t already have an idea. But also, we think they’re fun to try and complete. These challenges were inspired by some of Osamu Tezuka’s most famous manga. And of course, you could always try reading some books by Osamu Tezuka as well.

  1. Astroboy: Read a manga feature robots or machines
  2. Kimba the White Lion: Read a manga featuring animals, or nature
  3. Buddha: Read a historical manga, or a manga with religious themes
  4. Princess Knight: Read a romance, or adventure manga
  5. Phoenix: Read a short story, or manga featuring reincarnation/past lives
  6. Black Jack: Read a suspense manga, or a manga with medical themes

Watch Laura’s & Shae’s YouTube for reading recommendations!

 


SCHEDULE:

Date: November 3 (10:00AM MST) -November 4, 2018 (9:59AM MST)

Start Time: 10:00AM MST (Everyone starts at the same time. Find out what the start time is in your timezone, using the Time Zone Converter.

Follow us on Twitter: @MangaReadathon

 


The Manga Readathon was created by sisters (Laura) MangaHoarder and (Jennifer) Shelf Space Fleeting to inspire a love for all things manga.

 

I Was On The Radio! (talking about manga)

So, my sister and I have been fans of anime and manga for over 20 years now. And because of our loooong history being fans, we’ve had strange opportunities to “nerd-out” in public!

Our first chance was when we visited Japan in 2009. We went on a tour for fans, and our tour was subsequently interviewed by a local English-language newspaper. We were sadly misquoted in the piece, but it was still pretty exciting at the time to see the online engagement by Japanese fans with our words. Particularly my sisters’s (at the time) obsession with MatsuJun.

A few years later, we were asked to be interviewed by a photographer for a local magazine. She had been commissioned to do a photo essay about collector’s in the city. My name was passed along by a colleague who is very involved in the local art-scene. So a few weeks later, we were interviewed, and a large portrait of ourselves in front of our collection appeared in this magazine. I heard that this year the magazine has now ceased. But still, it was a cool (albeit an embarrassing) experience.

Because of that photo essay we’ve been contacted a few times for different opportunities, all of which were turned down. But, the latest phone call was from a local radio show “CBC : The Homestretch” requesting an interview. This was for a program series they were doing about ‘passionate hobbyists’, so they have a wider berth than just “collectors”.

We agreed to the interview. A few weeks later we had a knock on the door, and our interviewer came in with her microphone on and ready. And a few more weeks after a surprisingly awkward and unprepared interview, that left us both feeling emotionally anxious, we were on the radio.

Because the interview was quite awkward (on our end), I was especially nervous to listen to the program. I couldn’t do it live. I waited a day and listened to the broadcast online. It’s not bad. But there are some things about it that aren’t awesome which I need to address, before I share it with you…

  1. The in Japanese introduction is unfortunate (I’m not sure I’m confident this was written by a Japanese speaker). Do you really say, “aishimasu” toward inanimate objects? I would say “manga ga suki desu”. Not “watashi wa manga o aishimasu”. So that sounded weird to me… and the off-the-cuff remark “That’s Japanese for, ‘I love manga,’ or close enough”. Ummm…. No. There’s no “close enough” about it. Granted, he probably didn’t know what he was saying and was actually just remarking on his pronunciation. But, still… it comes off as an excuse for not doing your homework. Almost as bad as saying, “Ai rabu manga” in a Japanese accent and calling it “close enough” …urk.
  2. The Japanese koto/shamisen playing over our discussion of why we like manga was sooooooooo wrong! Why! Why did that have to play? Yes, we were talking about how much we like Japan, but we aren’t Japanese. It came off (to me) as orientalism. Which I… no…just no!
  3. The way the interview was cut is very good. Some of the worst parts of the interview that I was dreading to hear were removed. But, some context may have inadvertently been removed as well, which makes me sound like I approve of reading scans.  I state that we started buying manga because the only way to read manga at the time was to buy it. But, that was more a comment on (at the time) small library collections, and just the lack of availability of titles in regular book stores… not scans. So, no, I still do not approve of scanslations or scans reading. Please don’t take that message away from this.

Okay, so now that I’ve prepared you for the worst… it’s actually really not that bad. I may be reading more into it than I should (because that’s what I do). And, I certainly don’t think any mistake made was malicious in any way.

Plus, I had fun doing it. It was a good experience. And, I’d probably do it again.

So, here we are! Click the radio to listen, if you’re interested!

radio