I read 196 LN's in 2019, so there is a lot to think about with what I read through the year.
For me, the big winner of the year was Seven Seas getting Mushoku Tensei. This was the first LN/WN that I ever read, and was the one that I wanted to have in my hands the most since I started reading LN's. I still haven't read something that I enjoy as much as I enjoyed this series.
New Series -
YP - There were quite a number of new series from YP this year that I enjoyed. Probably the one that I enjoyed the most was Our Last Crusade or the Rise of a New World. This one kept getting hyped up, and it didn't disappoint. I can't wait for the second volume to arrive soon. Bonus points to YP for also licencing DxD this year
JNC - There wasn't too many new series that were that good for me. The one that I enjoyed the most was Record of Wortenia War. I didn't know much about it when I started reading and really enjoyed it. Although I'm reading Altina at the moment and still have The Holy Knight's Dark Road to read, so this might change.
SS - Other than Mushoku Tensei, the new one that enjoyed the most was Reincarnated as a Sword. Although I also did quite like Skeleton Knight and Classroom of the Elite.
SP - Rakudai Kishi. This was the other series that I most wanted to see licenced after Mushoku Tensei and DxD. I haven't read it yet since the physicals haven't been created yet, but I read the fan translations years ago. I haven't read any of their other series yet because of their record as a publisher, however their new editor says that they are changing things up there. So this will be my test with them to see if they screw it up or not.
Continuing Series -
YP - Would be a tie between A Sister's All You Need and Konosuba. Reading these series is always a great time with many laughs and usually finish these in one sitting because I don't want to put them down.
JNC - There are always a number that I can't wait to read like Arifureta, Realist Hero, Demon Lord, Ragnarok, etc. But the one that I probably enjoyed the most has been Seirei Gensouki. The longer the story goes, the more I enjoy it, and now I usually finish these books within a few hours of starting because I can't put them down.
SS - Toradora. Only a couple more books to go until the conclusion, I'm looking forward to seeing how the author will finish this off since I went in to this series not now much about it, and have been enjoying it.
Licencing Hopes for 2020
There are a heap that I would love to see come to us in the next year, but here is the short list.
Gamers, Akashic Records, Data a Live, Oda Nobuna, Campione!, Hachinan tte, World Teacher.
I could keep going but it would be a really long list.
Ok then, I just don't want to be the one to piss on people's fun.
My issues with this one are I thought the writing itself was mediocre. The descriptions light, the characters thinly drawn out, the plot and plot structure are derivative of far better books. Furthermore, the basic selling point doesn't really work as
Also the fan service is just super juvenile, super grade school level descriptions of boobies and bubble butts. Embarrassingly so. I'm not against fan service (I recently just finished and enjoyed Busy Wizard), but fuck this fan service was just the dumbest I've read since Battle Divas. In fact this and Divas are probably my least favorite light novels I've read (and I've read several hundred).
However as mentioned I did like the at quite a bit and short chapters made it far easier and faster to finish than Divas. So there are a few pluses.
It's done that way because there have been issues behind the scenes that have delayed a new volume and it's easier to just wait then have mad fans cause delays.
I know that issues Sam has mentioned have included a delay on the cover art due to an artist being sick, Golden week holidays in Japan putting a pause on the contract itself and more than once personal issues for JNC staffers.
So your normal everyday reasons for stuff to delay.
@jon-mitchell said in Over-localization:
@unsynchedcheese said in Over-localization:
think there's been a good English translation for "tsundere"
I think that English should just adopt the word.
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tsundere already lists tsundere as loanword so we're part way there. I agree that there is no adequate equivalen word in English that has a substantially similar meaning - you basically have to provide a definition of the word to properly convey it (e.g. saying someone "runs hot and cold" or "they act haughty but they also have a bashful side")
@someoldguy said in Ripoff audiobook?:
@serah I can usually pick up on artificial voices fairly quickly, especially when dealing with compressed speech. The voice used is pretty good, but the lack of natural pauses gave it away in a couple of sentences.
To me, a "proper" audio book would be more of a "dramatic reading" than "vocalized text" like used here. A story is being told; tell it like it is a story, instead of a news report.
Exactly that. And nothing less.
Also if physical books are what you're after, mandarake is cheap and I haven't had any problems with them. They also have a Japanese or English toggle for their website and their customer support is hella awesome. Shipping can be... pricey if you buy just one or two things, but I've found if I spend $20 on books (which can be anywhere from 5 to 12 books depending on sales) the $15 shipping isn't so bad. Aside from really older books, the condition listed on the site is always spot on too (they don't always mention the yellowing of pages or creases in the dustcover).
Members right now can only read volume 5 (part 2 v2) as it is still being translated. Volume 4 (part 2 v1) expired on December 15 according to the expiration thread: https://forums.j-novel.club/post/6325 (you probably aren't able to open it though, since it's members only). The first three volumes expired several months ago.
@melting-sky said in State of Digital Manga/LNs in Japan:
Another huge factor for some people such as myself is the fact that with many ebook services you don't actually own the book when you "buy" it. You get some DRM crippled rental that is basically worthless if the service you "bought" the book from goes belly up or you want to sell or lend the book.
The only reason I considered subscribing to this service is because the ebooks you actually buy are DRM free.
I wouldn't be doing much with e-books if I couldn't remove the DRM from the books that I buy. Fortunately, I have yet to have to make the choice between getting a book with DRM that I can't remove and not getting that book (e.g. if it's digital only, and the DRM can't be removed). I don't know what I'd do in that situation, since I have no interest in having DRM-laden books. The non-JNC e-books I buy, I buy from Kobo, and I'm able to remove the DRM fairly easily, but it's certainly nice when the publisher decides not to put DRM on their books like JNC does with their premium editions.
@mr-otter said in Arifureta: From Commonplace to World’s Strongest: Volume 11 release date?:
is there still not a date for vol 11?
Looks like it will be a few more months before Vol. 11 comes out. Arifureta Zero Vol. 4 comes out on Christmas, and in the After Story updates the author is not working on novel publication atm like they were a couple of months ago. Normally there is a break on the weekly After Story chapters for several weeks when they work on the next LN version.
@aruseus493 said in will J-novels translate the arifureta short story collection?:
Someone has a incomplete list on the wikia. Mostly bonus stories from volumes 1-5 although we don't know if Sam's premium bonuses have all of them considering just how many there are for every volume. There also seems to be unmarked stuff too. I'd love to check my copy, but I don't have it on hand sadly.
A bit late, but I'll throw in my two cents. About one fourth of the book is a completely new short story written specifically for the collection. Among the others, there were seven shorts that I don't recall being included with the premium copies:
@paul-nebeling I’m more surprised about Smartphone being so low. It’s in the top 3 bestselling series for JNC, so I would think it would at least make the top 10. Maybe a majority of Smartphone sales come from Amazon Kindle, or perhaps the JNC premium, since we have bonus stories.
In one previous thread there were at least 3 Japanese publishers who would not consider licensing if print wasn't an option. One of them was supposed to be a hard no without simultaneous print and digital on day one while the other 2 wanted either print options available or wouldn't contract without Sam also getting the print rights.
This was before the announcement that JNC was starting to do some series in print so the 2 maybe's may have already changed their minds since then.
@lighthawk96 Sometimes I wonder if Sol Press has been sitting on that license for a long time now but wanted to release all 3 volumes at once, 3 volumes at once is impressive, but if they got that deal like 2 years ago, it's not so.
It does seem weird that after so long it was Sol Press who decided to go for it, even though it was a highly requested series after all.
Having never read light novels in the original Japanese I can only speculate. I expect that generally speaking light novels are not designed to require deep textual analysis of the text to appreciate so only a minimal amount is lost in terms of change of how things are precisely worded.
However, novels that make a lot of cultural or pop culture references will have something lost in translation and we might not always appreciate the wordplay in character and book names.
I also expect that there will be information lost in terms of how characters refer to one another (first name? san? sama?) and their manner of speech (keigo?).
Some series recently ended/caught up so I've got a bit more spare time to read new parts but, yeah, I wasn't expecting all these new titles. And I'm actually interested in almost all the new licenses (except 3-4).
Though, at least half of the new licenses are only 2-3 volumes long so we'll catch up to JP rather quickly, which means the TLs will be free to work on even more series.
Anyway not complaining that we have more things to read, more like I'm complaining I won't have enough time to read all weekly parts if they keep adding new licenses so fast... lol