『リカーシブル』by Honobu YONEZAWA (米澤穂信) is the last novel on my reading challenge list of 2018, and I want to read it before the end of the year.
It took me two weeks to go through the first pages, though. I knew that to finish this book before December, 31st, I had to start it in November. This is the reason why one of my goal for the month was to start and ideally, read half of this book.
I started 『リカーシブル』at least 5 times during the past two weeks, and could not get into it. I was even thinking of giving it up altogether. But I think that these repetitive failures were due to my state of mind at the time rather than to the novel itself. These past two weeks, I haven’t worked much for my Japanese and starting a new novel felt like a daunting task.
What helped me overcome this state is this post by Ten Thousand Hours that gives great tips to start reading books in Japanese. Even after reading several novels, I still feel apprehension whenever I start a new one, and I am easily discouraged. This is what happened with Yonezawa’s novel, and I made the mistake of giving up after a few pages instead of reading enough to get used to the author’s style, the characters and the setting.
Once I did that however, I could not put down the book anymore. It took me two weeks to read the first 10 pages, and 3 days to read the next 100. This book is great! The story is typically the type of mystery in which I get engrossed very quickly.
The protagonist, Haruka, has just arrived with her little brother and her mother to a new town: the family is moving to the mother’s native place. Haruka is starting middle school in a new environment, and her main preoccupation is to find her place in the classroom’s invisible hierarchy and make friends. I still don’t know which direction the novel will take, but some accidents happen, and Haruka’s little brother starts saying weird things…
The novel is told in the first person, it is not hard to read and has a lot of dialogues. I don’t know why it took me so much time to get into it.
I am enjoying this book so much that it would have been a shame if I had given it up!