Even if I am still reading 舟を編む (progressing very slowly), I couldn’t resist the temptation to start a new novel by Higashino Keigo. I am reading the Kaga series (加賀恭一郎シリーズ) and I bought the 5th novel of the series: 私が彼を殺した.
When I started the novel, I really felt comfortable, I think the Japanese word 落ち着く would be appropriate to describe this feeling. Steadily reading the same author has the consequence that you get used to his or her style of writing. I have read 6 novels of Higashino Keigo so far in Japanese and I feel accustomed to his writing. Returning to one of his novels after a long pause felt like returning to a familiar and comfortable place.
I have read very comfortably a good third of 私が彼を殺した this weekend and I think that there are three reasons why I can read this novel quite easily:
- To begin with, Higashino Keigo’s novels are not difficult. If I compare with 舟を編む for example, Higashino Keigo’s books are very straightforward. Everything is said or described plainly and there are no long or difficult descriptions (except for the crime scene but it does not concern every novel).
- As I said before, I think that I got used to Higashino’s style of writing. This can be a problem when learning a language. I could be under the impression that I am progressing when I am only getting more familiar with a certain author. On the other hand, being able to read something in Japanese without effort is a great joy and a good motivation booster.
- Finally, it seems that the Shin Kanzen Series N2 that I am studying at the moment pays off. I am happy that I started this novel because it encourages me a lot to continue to study N2 material. The grammar book is especially hard and discouraging but seeing that I can read a novel easily now motivates me.
To say a word of the story itself, I am both very excited by it and a bit disappointed. Disappointed because, like the previous novel of the series, I fear that we will never get to follow detective Kaga’s decisions and actions. He will be seen through the eyes of the other 3 protagonists. But the story is captivating and the novel’s structure is very appealing: the story is narrated by three protagonists, each speaking with the first person. The back cover says that there are 3 suspects in this case, no doubt that our three narrators are these 3 suspects… Higashino Keigo does not only tell a new detective story with each novel, it seems that he also creates a new way of telling a detective story!
I will not make any reading notes for this novel because I don’t really need to. I haven’t come across any difficult part that would need some extra attention or vocabulary investigation. This novel is really something that I am reading for pleasure, not to study Japanese. 😁