Japanese Books That Are Not Manga

A tribute to the great works of Japanese literature... that ain't manga. Light novels ain't manga, and some of them are pretty good, but keep in mind this list is mostly Japanese novels and poetry.
1

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4.16 avg rating — 69,204 ratings
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2

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4.03 avg rating — 403,307 ratings
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3

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4.13 avg rating — 346,418 ratings
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4

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4.15 avg rating — 234,756 ratings
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5

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3.83 avg rating — 530,288 ratings
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6

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3.72 avg rating — 122,093 ratings
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7

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3.87 avg rating — 56,213 ratings
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8

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4.17 avg rating — 2,595 ratings
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9

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3.72 avg rating — 11,288 ratings
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10

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3.82 avg rating — 121,678 ratings
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11

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4.14 avg rating — 112,508 ratings
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12

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4.04 avg rating — 20,518 ratings
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13

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4.03 avg rating — 1,930 ratings
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14

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3.66 avg rating — 22,145 ratings
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15

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3.71 avg rating — 9,427 ratings
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16

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3.91 avg rating — 24,659 ratings
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17

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 39,532 ratings
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18

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4.01 avg rating — 1,185 ratings
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19

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4.13 avg rating — 223,776 ratings
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20

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3.60 avg rating — 20,863 ratings
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21

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4.04 avg rating — 7,091 ratings
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22

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3.95 avg rating — 31,523 ratings
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23

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4.02 avg rating — 6,482 ratings
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24

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4.47 avg rating — 16,384 ratings
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25

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4.09 avg rating — 13,715 ratings
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26

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3.48 avg rating — 8,978 ratings
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27

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4.14 avg rating — 31,850 ratings
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28

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3.77 avg rating — 20,235 ratings
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29

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3.89 avg rating — 6,270 ratings
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30

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3.94 avg rating — 101,549 ratings
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31

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4.19 avg rating — 1,507 ratings
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32

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4.47 avg rating — 772 ratings
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33

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3.99 avg rating — 13,775 ratings
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34

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3.75 avg rating — 10,043 ratings
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35

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4.05 avg rating — 71,326 ratings
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36

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 3,361 ratings
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37

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3.88 avg rating — 96,086 ratings
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38

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4.18 avg rating — 2,052 ratings
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39

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3.88 avg rating — 22,778 ratings
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40

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3.94 avg rating — 18,297 ratings
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41

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4.07 avg rating — 27,105 ratings
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42

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3.90 avg rating — 3,784 ratings
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43

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3.70 avg rating — 3,115 ratings
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44

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3.89 avg rating — 10,486 ratings
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45

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3.91 avg rating — 15,960 ratings
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45

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3.92 avg rating — 223,964 ratings
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47

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3.89 avg rating — 8,211 ratings
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48

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3.77 avg rating — 3,599 ratings
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49

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3.86 avg rating — 123,074 ratings
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50

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3.62 avg rating — 3,543 ratings
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51

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3.22 avg rating — 2,649 ratings
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52

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4.08 avg rating — 404 ratings
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52

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3.53 avg rating — 18,875 ratings
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54

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3.49 avg rating — 730 ratings
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55

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3.60 avg rating — 1,803 ratings
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56

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3.89 avg rating — 24,818 ratings
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57

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3.96 avg rating — 13,057 ratings
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58

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3.85 avg rating — 9,139 ratings
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59

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3.85 avg rating — 644 ratings
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59

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3.91 avg rating — 6,112 ratings
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61

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3.53 avg rating — 2,346 ratings
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62

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4.05 avg rating — 313 ratings
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62

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4.03 avg rating — 39,248 ratings
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64

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3.83 avg rating — 2,053 ratings
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64

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4.19 avg rating — 4,592 ratings
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64

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4.14 avg rating — 31,850 ratings
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67

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3.89 avg rating — 1,707 ratings
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67

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3.78 avg rating — 58 ratings
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69

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4.18 avg rating — 40,035 ratings
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69

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4.43 avg rating — 11,676 ratings
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71

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3.92 avg rating — 2,821 ratings
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71

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3.84 avg rating — 4,028 ratings
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71

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3.65 avg rating — 3,065 ratings
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74

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3.66 avg rating — 2,534 ratings
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75

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3.26 avg rating — 9,658 ratings
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76

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3.92 avg rating — 1,963 ratings
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77

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3.65 avg rating — 5,274 ratings
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78

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3.41 avg rating — 6,484 ratings
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79

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3.86 avg rating — 42,448 ratings
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80

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3.32 avg rating — 4,860 ratings
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81

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3.72 avg rating — 370 ratings
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82

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3.96 avg rating — 2,620 ratings
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83

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4.13 avg rating — 3,455 ratings
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84

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3.64 avg rating — 726 ratings
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85

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3.76 avg rating — 9,620 ratings
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86

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4.44 avg rating — 90 ratings
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87

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3.66 avg rating — 1,585 ratings
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88

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3.62 avg rating — 9,569 ratings
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89

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3.18 avg rating — 4,303 ratings
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90

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3.71 avg rating — 5,335 ratings
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91

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3.55 avg rating — 8,622 ratings
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92

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3.55 avg rating — 8,192 ratings
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93

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3.82 avg rating — 16,069 ratings
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94

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3.69 avg rating — 1,092 ratings
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95

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4.01 avg rating — 2,154 ratings
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95

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3.69 avg rating — 8,040 ratings
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97

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3.77 avg rating — 4,579 ratings
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98

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3.51 avg rating — 5,575 ratings
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99

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3.62 avg rating — 263 ratings
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100

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4.02 avg rating — 2,553 ratings
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222 books · 191 voters · list created August 15th, 2009 by Jacobmartin (votes) .
145 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


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More voters…


Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Jacobmartin (new)

Jacobmartin Currently I am just adding a few of the Japanese books (which ain't manga) that I'm aware of. Feel free to add your own, and state why you added them.


message 2: by Jacobmartin (new)

Jacobmartin Seriously guys, I've only read so many Japanese books, I can't fill this list myself. Please tell me somebody's going to put The Tale of Genji in here somewhere...


message 3: by Koori no hi (new)

Koori no hi Is I am a Cat a comic? I thought this list wasn't for manga?


message 4: by Jacobmartin (new)

Jacobmartin DragonEyedOnePieceFan wrote: "Is I am a Cat a comic? I thought this list wasn't for manga?"

I Am A Cat is not actually a manga, it is a 20th (I think...) Century novel in the perspective of a cat who according to my sources witnesses a murder.




message 5: by Adam (new)

Adam Never Let Me Go should not be on this list because Ishiguro is British and the book is not set in Japan either.


message 6: by Jeannie (last edited Mar 26, 2012 03:34PM) (new)

Jeannie Adam wrote: "Never Let Me Go should not be on this list because Ishiguro is British and the book is not set in Japan either."

I agree! Ishiguro is British-Japanese but writes in English for western audiences. This is like including Amy Tan on a Chinese lit list.


message 7: by Harajyuku (new)

Harajyuku Adam wrote: "Never Let Me Go should not be on this list because Ishiguro is British and the book is not set in Japan either."

Jeannie wrote: "Adam wrote: "Never Let Me Go should not be on this list because Ishiguro is British and the book is not set in Japan either."

I agree! Ishiguro is British-Japanese but writes in English for wester..."


Thirded. Even if An Artist of the Floating World were on this list I wouldn't consider it Japanese lit because it's thematically and stylistically Western (arguably Remains of the Day set in Japan). The Amy Tan comparison is apt.

Jacobmartin wrote: "DragonEyedOnePieceFan wrote: "Is I am a Cat a comic? I thought this list wasn't for manga?"

I Am A Cat is not actually a manga, it is a 20th (I think...) Century novel in the perspective of a cat ..."


I Am a Cat is a satirical novel about academic hypocrisy in the Meiji era written from the point of view of a professor's cat.


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