On a normal week, I would have come home from Double Psychology on Fridays, which I have deemed ‘Good for the Soul’ because I always seem to come home relaxed afterwards.
This being Mock Week, I didn’t.
I had a free afternoon. Okay, so it wasn’t supposed to be a free afternoon and I was supposed to be doing things, but it was a nice afternoon nevertheless. Most of it was spent in a bookstore, reading.
(Recently been using phone photos. The phone in question is nearly five years old and slower than my knitting speed.)
I always seem to go straight to the manga section, in a suitably cozy corner. The book shown on the table – y’know, the yellow one so bright the camera fails to capture it right – is the first volume of ‘Assassination Classroom’ (a manga). I’d read the blurb for it online and it seemed quite mundane (class of kids trying to kill their teacher, of course) but when I picked it up I found that the teacher in question was an alien villain from outer space who had blown up the moon. I’m not even kidding. Needless to say, I read the entire volume… and I want to read more.
The book in my hand is ‘Battle Royale’ by Koushun Takami (not a manga, although there is a manga version and two films).
You may have heard of it through the Hunger Games grapevine. I did not – I think it was introduced to me by a friend some years ago. I loved it the first time round, and reading it again now, I find that I still do. I didn’t remember the book being so thick, though – thick enough for me to consider finding a copy in hardback instead of instantly breaking the spine on a paperback. (After a Google, I have found that there is no hardback version. I am very upset by this.)
It is older than, yet similar to, THG, but it is also much, much more brutal, gory, less romantic. To the people that have criticized the book for its shallow tone, I think that’s a great feature of the book, as it makes the plot sound much more casual and emotionless, fitting for the Program (it may have also been the fault of the translation). Where THG has glamourized elements and a First Person POV complete with love triangle, Battle Royale is completely stripped bare from a bird’s eye that watches all the
The one I am reading is an older translation published in the UK in 2007, I think. There’s another edition available now, much more recent in a new translation (that may or may not be better. I want to buy both copies now, and would gladly do so.)
Basically, if you heard about the premise of THG and was disappointed upon reading/watching it to find that there was less blood than you thought, then you should read this.
For some reason, reading it gives me a dose of great satisfaction.
P.S. I didn’t expect to write so much about this book. I clearly love it.
P.S.S I did buy that chocolate shade of cotton 4ply. Not sure what to do with it yet, but the fact that it’s in the stash makes me happy.
P.S.S.S I love how WordPress gives me a notification for my 5th post. I feel so proud of myself.