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Aozora difficulty ratings 
10th-Apr-2017 02:16 pm
akira hikikomori
Hey, I don't know if it's already been posted here but someone ran all of Aozora Bunko (Japan's out-of-copyright story website) through a program that counted how many different kanji it had in it, and created a list with the "easiest to hardest" stories. Here's the lowest level:


Another person said this story is the easiest out of the whole site:

My thinking is, if you want to improve your reading/kanji for the JLPT (as most people think the reading section is the hardest), you can just read all these stories from easiest to hardest....
10th-Apr-2017 05:27 pm (UTC)
Wow! That's interesting. But the sad thing is that for me, reading and listening I get perfect in JLPT and grammar I usually get a few marks off on LOL
11th-Apr-2017 10:37 am (UTC)
Yeah honestly I wonder about these guys who complain about the reading... is it that they're just not reading ANYTHING aside from their textbooks, or is there some bigger problem? My classmates for example have said some really shocking stuff because they apparently do zero outside reading, like they didn't know the kanji for 誰 or the difference between じゃ and ええと. But open up any manga and you'll learn them in like two pages....

It seems to me that as long as you know enough vocabulary, reading is easy. And from what I can tell, all the "advanced" grammar is just phrases/individual vocabulary words that fit into the same grammar (word order etc) you already know, but since the meanings/nuances are often a bit unclear from context alone you have to have someone teach you them. I'm using "A Dictionary of Intermmediate/Advanced Japanese" for grammar lately.
12th-Apr-2017 04:35 am (UTC)
Ooh, that's awesome! Thank you!
13th-Apr-2017 07:02 am (UTC)
No problem! A lot of them aren't even fiction but the ones that ARE fiction are pretty easy to read, even for me who's not quite at N2 yet... The nonfiction ones seem harder.
13th-Apr-2017 09:08 pm (UTC)
Any recommendations? :D By that I mean stories that are fun and interesting. I could just go from easiest to hardest but since my time is limited I'll be choosy.

Edited at 2017-04-13 09:10 pm (UTC)
14th-Apr-2017 08:31 am (UTC)
I've just started going through everything on the list myself, but so far these ones were "okay", not amazing but readable:

alcoholic dad finally buys a bike for his kid

kid abandons a tree then tries to get it back

letter about poverty in wartime

bird came to a garden

personally i really like osamu dazai so if i were being choosy i'd just read only his stuff LOL
15th-Apr-2017 06:28 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the recs! Reading the alcoholic dad one right now lol. I've heard of Osamu Dazai, will check him out.
17th-Apr-2017 08:49 pm (UTC)
From what I remember, Dazai's writing style is really easy to understand (compared to some other authors), he usually writes about "everyday stuff" and isn't so abstract in general, so I think he's pretty good to read. AND (again as far as I remember) like with seemingly most Japanese authors a WHOOOOLE lot of his works aren't in English or were badly translated (*cough localized or censored cough*) so if you want to read them you pretty much have to learn Japanese ; D

"人間失格 / No Longer Human"'s been turned into an OVA and a manga, I'm not sure about anything else. It's his most famous work in the English-speaking realm but I'm pretty sure my Japanese teacher said "Human Lost" (another story, with the title actually in English like that) was most famous in Japan...? Or maybe she got the two mixed up. Anyway I personally prefer his random short stories to his books.

Here's the story of his we read in our 3rd semester class:

Edited at 2017-04-17 08:51 pm (UTC)
31st-Jul-2017 11:00 pm (UTC) - Test, just a test
Hello. And Bye.
2nd-Aug-2017 08:15 pm (UTC)
Errr is it fine to delete this comment now that it's been a day...?
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