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Blog Archives

The Amoral Core of Lazy Dungeon Master

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I’ve always been fascinated with monsters. They follow a system of morality that isn’t the least bit concerned with human rights. Racism? Bigotry? Inequality? None of that registers to them. As far as monsters are concerned, all human lives are equally worthless.

So what if a human became a monster? Or what if they were given incentives to see the world the way a monster does?

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June 2018 Update: Oops, I burnt out on light novels so I’m now going to talk about video games instead

Detective Pikachu

So in my last blog update post, I said something about how “light novels are cooler than anime”.

Turns out light novels are actually bad.

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People Sure Like to Romanticise Fan Translations

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People sure like to romanticise piracy. This was something that occurred to me after I published an article a few days ago called Explaining the English Light Novel Boom with Bookwalker Global, which didn’t mention piracy at all and yet sparked controversy on the subject anyway. As many of the comments argued, fan translations have played a part in popularizing light novels in English translation. Why didn’t I mention their existence?

In truth, I didn’t set out to snub fan translation in that piece. It was simply the case that the people I spoke to at Bookwalker Global did not mention it. The article was not intended as a comprehensive overview of the light novel industry; it was meant to showcase Bookwalker Global’s perspective on the subject. I thought that their views would be interesting because a) They’ve recently jumped onto the English light novel bandwagon with a clear rationale for doing so, and b) They are deeply connected to the Japanese light novel market.

Fan translations were clearly not relevant with Bookwalker Global’s choice of exclusive titles. Neither The Combat Baker nor The Ryuo’s Work is Never Done! had English fan translations when these releases were being decided, nor was there much hype for them on English-language social media. However, people still wanted me to talk about fan translation anyway. I suspect that they wanted me to romanticise their place in history.

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“My Little Sister Can Read Kanji” vs “I Saved Too Many Girls and Caused the Apocalypse”

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Light novels are known for their clickbait titles even though the majority of light novels do not actually have clickbait titles. But hey, I fell for it, because out of all the J-Novel Club titles released so far, the only ones I’ve read at the time of this writing are My Little Sister Can Read Kanji and I Saved Too Many Girls and Caused the Apocalypse. I regret nothing.

This blog post is an evaluation of the two titles and their potential for fantastic memes.

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The Isolator is Reki Kawahara’s Best Work

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Reki Kawahara is well known for Sword Art Online and Accel World, but if you ask me, his best work is The Isolator, a sci-fi thriller and psychological drama series that only gets a new volume once a year. It’s based off a web novel Kawahara began writing in 2004, but he has rewritten the story heavily for its light novel release, and it is easily his most mature work.

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Reflections on 2016: How I Became “The Light Novel Blogger”

2016 was the year I finished writing my honours thesis and graduated from university. The thesis, which drew heavily from my personal observations as a light novel fan translator, was called “Exploring Foreignisation/Domestication Post-Editing Strategies in Machine-Assisted Fan Translations of Japanese Web Novels” (what a mouthful!). Later this year, I published two articles based on my research on Anime News Network, explaining the basics of the subculture.

And now, for some inexplicable reason that I can’t quite fathom, I’m known to the fandom at large as… “the light novel blogger”.

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October 2016 Update: Why I Support Anime Feminist, And More

love-live-halloweenIt’s the spooky Halloween edition!

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Thoughts on Hakomari

covers2-3I still don’t know what happened there…

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Re:ZERO Ex vol. 1 – Summary and Impressions

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In a nutshell: The Re:ZERO Ex novel raises more questions than it answers about Crusch and Ferris’s pasts, but Re:ZERO fans should enjoy it nonetheless. The lack of a central plot in this volume does make it weaker than the main story, however.

A note of warning: This review contains spoilers for the Re:ZERO Ex novel. Don’t read this post if you don’t want to get spoiled for the anime because I’ll be discussing the main story here as well. Also, there are no web novel spoilers here, so please don’t provide any in the comments.

Update: Yen Press released an English translation of this novel on November 21st, 2017. Please support the release!

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I bought this light novel thinking it was a cute knight/princess story but it was a gay romance instead

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Actual title: 12-gatsu no Veronica (Amazon link)

Hey guys, I’m back with another review of an untranslated light novel that nobody has read or will ever read. But I liked it, so here’s a blog post about it. I will be spoiling the crap out of the entire novel, so here’s a fair warning in advance. I have a lot of ~FEELINGS~ to convey, so let’s jump right into it.

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