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The Spring 2020 Light Novel Guide Part I




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pharmboy23
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2020 1:04 pm Reply with quote
The second volume of Adachi & Shimamura really fixed pretty much every complaint I had about the first volume (particularly that tiresome extraneous character). Quite a low-key yuri.
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dm
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2020 6:30 pm Reply with quote
I hope Monday brings reviews of the first volumes of the Penguindrum and Sarazanmai novels.

(Surprise (to me) revelation of the Penguindrum novel that is most interesting in terms of Sarazanmai: Ringo has treasured kappa and otter stuffed animals.)
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Saffire
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 15, 2020 1:55 pm Reply with quote
I really don't like the anachronism-based criticisms for Marielle Clarac (and I think there was another one on Friday) when the author basically states in the afterword "Yeah I know the setting is kind of a cultural jumble, please take it as it is". There's many things that a 19th century Europe setting would have that aren't present in the story (guns and steam engines, most notably). If it was meant to be an actual period piece I'd get it, but when dealing with fictional worlds that only loosely tie to a real-world analogue, giving the author some latitude to change things up for entertainment value seems like a natural thing to do.

I liked the reviews in general though, there's a couple in here I'll have to check out.
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Sakagami Tomoyo



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PostPosted: Mon Jun 15, 2020 9:10 pm Reply with quote
Saffire wrote:
I really don't like the anachronism-based criticisms for Marielle Clarac (and I think there was another one on Friday) when the author basically states in the afterword "Yeah I know the setting is kind of a cultural jumble, please take it as it is". There's many things that a 19th century Europe setting would have that aren't present in the story (guns and steam engines, most notably). If it was meant to be an actual period piece I'd get it, but when dealing with fictional worlds that only loosely tie to a real-world analogue, giving the author some latitude to change things up for entertainment value seems like a natural thing to do.

In general, I agree - if a setting is only meant to be kind of like a real world place/time, I'm generally happy to just roll with elements that would otherwise be out of place and enjoy the ride. But on the other hand, some things do just stick out as too out of place - different things to different degrees to different people - and the author acknowledging it doesn't make a work immune to criticism. With the exception of entirely or mostly comedic works, things still have to make reasonable sense in the context they're presented, and even comedy isn't entirely an exception.

That said, I haven't read the novel in question, so I can't properly comment on how well it works here. But unless the heroine was isekai'd into the setting, "fangirling" does seem just a bit too out of place. I could see it working, if the novel drew some parallels between the shoujo/josei manga industry/fandom and the romance novel industry/fandom in the setting, but it doesn't especially sound like that's the case.
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kgw



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:43 am Reply with quote
Sometimes I think people has a really low bar for LNs. Had the Clarac's book came from not-Japan, nobody would've ever thought to publish it abroad. Seriously, it sounds as one of those "All you need to know about (random European country)" guides written by a guy in (i.e.) Maine whose only knowledge comes from watching two European series or movies in Netflix.

Last edited by kgw on Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:56 am; edited 1 time in total
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Princess_Irene



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:16 am Reply with quote
Sakagami Tomoyo wrote:
I could see it working, if the novel drew some parallels between the shoujo/josei manga industry/fandom and the romance novel industry/fandom in the setting, but it doesn't especially sound like that's the case.


It really feels and looks much more like the 19th century's thirst for sensation and sentimental novels, the kind published by "A Lady," largely because the other period setting details are firmly of that period.

kgw wrote:
written by a guy in (i.e.) Maine


Interesting choice of states, since I'm from Maine. Smile
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kgw



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:55 am Reply with quote
Princess_Irene wrote:

kgw wrote:
written by a guy in (i.e.) Maine

Interesting choice of states, since I'm from Maine. Smile

No offence. I was planing to write Wyoming, but I wasn't sure of the spelling. Smile
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Princess_Irene



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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 8:31 am Reply with quote
kgw wrote:

No offence. I was planing to write Wyoming, but I wasn't sure of the spelling. Smile


No worries! I thought it was funny, and Maine is easier to spell than Wyoming! Very Happy
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Psycho 101
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:25 pm Reply with quote
Princess_Irene wrote:

Interesting choice of states, since I'm from Maine. Smile


For Christmas can you send me some actual real Maine maple Syrup please? Wink

Out of these I have to say The Extraordinary, the Ordinary, and SOAP! does catch my eye. I am growing increasingly tired of the Isekai invasion inundating the market. The titles are getting a bit ridiculous and they just seem so interchangeable. This one's premise does seem to break that mold a bit. Plus with the MC being one of the "natives" this could probably just be written as a normal high fantasy setting without the isekai twist. Plus the idea of magical "soap" is unique and I am interested in how that can be used, and the MC "cleaning" people's minds etc., as the story progresses.

The rest though....meh.
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Princess_Irene



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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 8:33 am Reply with quote
Psycho 101 wrote:

For Christmas can you send me some actual real Maine maple Syrup please? Wink


Ha ha, you got it. When the pandemic ends, you should look into Maine Maple Sunday in the spring. All the sugar houses have tours, samples, pancake breakfasts...it's amazing.

Quote:
Out of these I have to say The Extraordinary, the Ordinary, and SOAP! does catch my eye.


I have to say, it was my hands-down favorite of this batch, though I do adore Obsessions of an Otome Gamer, which also plays with the standard formula quite a bit. The other I'd fully recommend is At Night, I Become a Monster, although there are a few I may read more of because they were good enough (Adachi and Shimamura) or because of curiosity and just enough formula-tinkering (Buck Naked in Another World).

I did end up reading the second Can Someone Please Explain What's Going On and liked it better than the first. The issues I mentioned persisted, but they were lesser, and I frankly just needed something to be annoyed at that wasn't reality.
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pharmboy23
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:14 am Reply with quote
Shocking lack of love for Tearmoon Empire, simply shocking Wink
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