23 Jun 2012 0 Comment
After lots of dev work on the LNDB.info website, it's now possible to add characters, their features and description per each light novel entry. You can register and start adding authors, illustrators, light novels and their covers and characters.
Please tell us what you think about this new feature in this forum thread, and feel free to suggest a feature.
Edit: It's now also possible to add multiple authors and illustrators per light novel entry.
3 Jun 2012 0 Comment
Our child project LNDB.info has been under heavy development since the day it went online. Keep up with new features and additions to the site in the Upcoming Features thread. If you have any suggestions/additions/changes you would like the site to have, head to the Feature Suggestions & Feedback thread and let us hear you.
6 May 2012 0 Comment
I'm proud to announce the start of a new project, LNDB.info, a website designated for light novels, light novel authors and illustrators and more. The site is a user generated content, so anyone can register, log in and contribute content.
Please feel free to join in, contribute and let us know what you think in the site's forum.
5 Sep 2010 0 Comment
Title: Book Girl and the Suicidal Mime ("Bungaku Shoujo" to Shi ni Tagari no Piero)
Author: Nomura Mizuki
Illustrator: Takeoka Miho
Original publisher: Enterbrain
Label: Famitsu Bunko
Licensed by: Yen Press
Translated by: Karen McGillicuddy
Reviewed by: gespenst
Bungaku Shoujo is a series that tells of the high school life of Inoue Konoha and his adventures in the Literature Club along with his cute and somewhat eccentric senpai, Amano Tohko (the Bungaku Shoujo, if you will). Konoha, a kind but reticent young man, was formerly an award winning novelist in middle school. The fame he gained from writing a best-selling novel has had the negative effect of having traumatized him and leaving him socially handicapped. Tohko, the President of the Literature Club as well as its only other member, is a bubbly and likable third year who also happens to be a youkai of sorts who eats books (literally). This first volume in Nomura-sensei's series introduces these two as well as some minor characters in a light-hearted and homely manner. Tohko and Konoha's interactions mostly consist of their discussing of literature often in the context of food (which is fitting because Tohko literally consumes the pages of the books she speaks of so lovingly). These are written in an amusing and comedic manner which should please fans of cute girls who do insane things. It may surprise the reader to notice that the fact that Tohko is a youkai has actually nothing to do with the main plot, but this doesn't damage the narrative in any way. What starts as Tohko's humorous ploy of billing the club as a “make your love come true!”-type service in order to get more “snacks” (in the form of written reports) from customers leads to a mystery for the Literature Club to solve. The mystery that follows will lead the characters into much darker territory than the tone of Konoha and Tohko's interactions would have lead you to believe. Without going into spoiler territory, the mystery is told in parallel to frequent anecdotes from Dazai Osamu's No Longer Human. If you're a mystery buff, it may not be too hard for you to figure everything out quite early, but this reviewer (at least) had a wonderful time deducing just what the heck was going on and who is who till the very end.
Con's: The front cover, I am lead to believe, is a very photoshopped version of the original cover art. I don't see what is the point of shrinking such lovely artwork. The translation, in general, is quite formidable, but I have a few specific qualms with it. First of all, I would have liked if the title Bungaku Shoujo was translated to be A Literary Girl. Book Girl seems somewhat, not too literal, but perhaps too simplified. I could be wrong about this, but the title refers to how Tohko is from the Bungei-bu, which is commonly translated as Literature Club. So “bungaku shoujo” (where shoujo means young human female) would be a way of saying “literary girl”. Clearly, A Literary Girl would probably have been a more sensitive English title. Besides Book Girl sounds pretty clumsy. But oh well, as they say, a rose by any other name... Also, this translation does not include the Japanese honorifics that the characters use when addressing each other. This makes it slightly harder to see what the characters roles are in relation to each other in terms of kohai/senpai and etc (although ,thanks to the internet, its not too hard to figure out that Tohko is “Tohko-senpai” to Konoha; and that Konoha is “Konoha-kun” to Tohko). There was also one point where I swear a character wanted to use the term “lolicon”, but instead used a more wordy manner of expressing this. But I guess that can't be faulted to the translator since “lolicon” isn't actually a word in the English language.
Pro's: First of all, the art by Takeoka Miho-sensei is great! The color illustrations have an ethereal look with a strong emphasis on water colors that seems to carry over into the personalities of the characters very well. I feel that the artist's renditions of the characters fit them to a tee. The translation is a mostly brisk and easy to understand read that leaves little to be desired (short of ultra-obsessing over honorifics and specific words [this specific reviewer's subjective weak point]). As a fan of random classical literature as well as absolute trash fiction (Star Wars novels “for the win” as they say), I loved the frequent allusions to actual literature brought up in the dialogue, and hope that this could convince my fellow light novel fans to go out and read some occasional complicated-ass stuff! The interaction between Tohko and Konoha is very fun to read, and leaves me wanting more and more. I can't help but fantasize about whether Tohko will become some sort of romantic interest in the far future, or perhaps a minor cast member who seems to be tsundere to Konoha will snatch him away! Who knows maybe Konoha will decide to give up on 3D women altogether. But I digress, since romance had almost nothing to do with this volume. The two really do seem to have a sweet senpai/kohai relationship though (more along the lines of older sister and younger brother). This is a mystery novel foremost, and the manner in which it is written was very entertaining to me. It was not extremely cerebral, but difficult enough for someone who considers the Gyakuten Saiban (Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney) series of games to be the height of “entertaining mysteries”. Also, this volume seemed to emphasize the theme, “everyone has something dark in their past that they have to hide”, which resounded greatly with this reviewer. It was “touching”, as they say, although I don't think it will be the same way for other readers.
Overview: There is not a lot of action in this volume, due to the mystery nature of the plot. Most of what occurs is told through internal monologue and dialogues between characters. Also, there are plenty of references to actual literary works, so that may or may not turn the reader off to currently reading this if they're not in the right mood. If you're in the mood for a fun high school mystery with a slight dark side then this would probably a good time to start Bungaku Shoujo.
In general, one can see the path or formula that Nomura-sensei is probably taking for this series. Every volume will contain light-hearted interaction between Tohko and Konoha (as well as the minor cast), gradually revealing more about their own pasts (more about Konoha's time as a traumatized shut-in and how he is related to a mysterious girl that appears in his flashback memories; and perhaps some explanation to Tohko's youkai...ness! Please!). And then the pair will get caught up in a mystery of sorts with varying level of pathos and tragedy (as this first volume leads me to believe) ... leading ultimately to the moment of truth, where the Bungaku Shoujo herself will explain it all in a moment of Sherlock Holmes inspired clairvoyance; finally, with all the involved parties finding some semblance of salvation (or not)! I believe that this kind of format has its limits, and can become repetitive in two or three more volumes. But if it is told well, with the proper quality and amount of character development, this series could become a very addictive read.
I personally look forward to the next volume and hope that Nomura-sensei can keep us excited to learn more about Konoha and Tohko. I would recommend this first volume of Bungaku Shoujo to all my friends that already read books, but probably not to the ones that consider reading net blogs as “reading the news”. If I had to give this novel a subjective numerical/alphabetical value in order to rate it, I would arbitrarily give it a 85% or B+. In my opinion though, I think it is better to think of this first of Nomura-sensei's work as a Strawberry parfait, made with plenty of fun, love, and fresh ingredients. It can be enjoyed if you scarf it down quickly but if you ate it slowly and gave some thought to the contents of the ingredients, the kind of granola used, the random Pocky sticks, the freshness of the strawberries, perhaps you can find more out of it than whats presented at face value. I liked it a lot.
14 Aug 2010 2 Comments
Paradigm, the publisher of adult light novel adaptations of bishoujo games under its adult light novel label "Paradigm Novels", will be starting a new adult light novel label that's titled "Puchipara Bunko" (Petitpara Bunko, ぷちぱら文庫).
The label is starting in September 2010 with the release of two light novel titles. The two light novels are adaptations of adult bishoujo games.
The light novels are:
Nee Summer! (Nee-sama!) - Based on an eroge by ARTEMIS.
Author: Okita Kazuhiko
Illustrator: Sumeragi Kohaku
Temptation ~Saiin no Naraku~ - Based on an eroge by Parthenon.
Author: Harukaze Shiori
Illustrator: Iizuki Tasuku
Source: Ranobe no Mori