I first discovered The Accusation by Bandai from a booktube channel thought I cannot recall which one exactly. There was something intriguing about this collection of short stories beyond the obvious – I always enjoy a good short story, and I actively seek out books in translation. This was a collection of stories from a place where we do not get stories, where literature and film and everyday life is somewhat of an unknown. It is a story the author went to great lengths to hide and smuggle out of North Korea to China. It is a story which, by all rights, I should have heard about soon due to nothing less than the sheer importance that it was published.
Mass market paperbacks seem to get a certain amount of derision from the bookish community. They’re too thick, the typeface too small, they fall apart easily, the spines always break, and the covers tear off with little provocation. And I own hundreds of them.
Apparently me and my reading slumps have a pattern. This time last year I posted an article about the troubles of reading slumps. And, where am I again? In a reading slump. Maybe there’s something about the months of April and May for my brain that says it’s not the time to read? Maybe it’s because for years these were the months at school full of test prep, final papers and projects and the final push to the end of the year. For now, that’s my theory. However, in an attempt to battle back I’m revisiting my own advice and seeing what may help snap me out of this year’s slump!
I made it! I completed the OWLs Reading Challenge!
Honestly, I wasn’t sure I was going to complete the five categories needed to ace my OWLs. I didn’t read quite as much this month as I did through January, February, and March, and I finished the last two books on the very last day of the challenge. This was tons of fun, though. I loved the premise of the challenge. I really had to search through my shelves for books that would fulfill some of the categories. While I didn’t read something for all of the categories, I did have books lined up for almost all of them and do still plan on reading them at some point in the near future.
Some of the books I’ve read have already been reviewed on the blog. (Links are included below.) Others will be reviewed soon, so stay tuned for those.
Ancient Runes: Null States by Malka Older
Astronomy: Void Black Shadow by Corey R. White
Arithmancy: One Way by S. J. Morden
Care of Magical Creatures:
Charms: American Gods: Shadow #1-4 by Neil Gaimon, P. Craig Russell, and Scott Hampton
Defense Against the Dark Arts:
Herbology: Black Clover Vol. 1 by Yuki Tabata
History of Magic:
Transfiguration: Cutie Honey a Go Go! by Go Nagai, Ito Shinpei, and Anno Hideaki
It took longer than I expected, but I’ve filled in all of the challenges I’ve completed so far this year. While this wasn’t difficult, it was a little time consuming. Several of the manga I’ve read could potentially fill more than one challenge, but I wanted to limit it to one right now. For completions sake I might use one manga for multiple categories, but I wanted to see what I managed without relying on grouping challenges together first.
I’m not very good at beginning reading challenges on their start date. I have a bad habit of finding a challenge that sounds amazing, making a mental note to join in and write a blog post about it, and then forgetting about the reading challenge until it shows up in my social media feed again. Such is the case with the #ReadManga18 Challenge by Manga Hoarder.
I might have discovered this month long reading challenge late, but it’s definitely one I will be participating in. April 2nd to April 29th is the OWL Reading Challenge. This reading challenge is hosted by Gintare over at Book Roast. It’s been some time since I’ve stumbled on a readathon or reading challenge and gotten this excited about it. Despite being late, I just knew that I had to join in.
When I was young TokyoPop was one of the top publishers of manga in the US. They ate up IPs for manga. They published a huge variety of genres. They even published light novels, something that many other publishers, even those who did publish manga, largely didn’t touch. A great many TokyoPop titles still grace my shelves. My local library still has dozens of TokyoPop releases in their manga section. By all regards TokyoPop was extremely important in getting manga into the hands of my generations.
Yesterday, the SFWA released the 2017 Nebula Award Finalists. A ton of absolutely fantastic works have been nominated. Some we’ve read. Some are still on the ever growing to be read list. Either way, this is a most definitely a list of book to check out.
Every year bookworms everywhere take stock of the books they finished reading over the last 365 days and make a new goal for what they hope to accomplish this upcoming year. I am no different but I must admit I was disappointed in myself this past year as I barely reached my minimal reading goal and definitely did not write enough reviews this past year either. The reason for all of this? Reading slumps. What did I do to try and break out of this? Keep reading to find out!