Monday, May 30, 2011

BEA 2010: The Books

BEA 2010 Javits Center
BEA 2010, Javits Center, NYC. Entrance to the Exhibitor Hall.

In my Armchair BEA post on Friday, Bloggers and Blogging, I said how wonderful it was to meet other bloggers in New York last year during Book Expo America, but of course we were all there for the books as well.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Armchair BEA: Bloggers and Blogging

The best thing about blogging is meeting others who share your love of books and reading. I suppose some people might like speaking out into the void but I think most book bloggers like the interaction with other book lovers. We never get tired of talking about books, do we? So one of the best things about going to New York for Book Expo America last year was meeting some of the bloggers that I'd already got to know online over the years, and meeting some new ones too.

I have to say I'm always pretty shy when meeting new people, or in new situations, so being at BEA and the Book Blogger Convention, I was a little out of my element, to say the least. On top of that, I was super jet-lagged the whole time I was there. There is a 13 hours time difference between Tokyo and New York so my body was on a completely opposite schedule!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Armchair BEA: Giveaway

It's time for my Armchair BEA giveaway, and I'm giving away two books that were being promoted at last year's Book Expo America.

The first is an ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of Room by Emma Donoghue. There have been rave reviews of this book all over the blogosphere, and it was one of the books people were most excited about last year.
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It's where he was born, where he and his Ma eat and play and learn. At night, Ma puts him safely to sleep in the wardrobe, in case Old Nick comes.
Room is home to Jack, but to Ma it's the prison where she's been held for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for her son. But Jack's curiosity is building alongside Ma's desperation - and she knows Room cannot contain either indefinitely...
Told in the inventive, funny, and poignant voice of Jack, Room is a powerful story of a mother and son whose love lets them survive the impossible.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Armchair BEA: Me, My Blog, and I

This time last year we had already been in New York City for a couple of days taking in some of the sights before Book Expo America and the Book Blogger Convention later in the week. Neither of us had been to New York before so a big book fair seemed a great excuse to finally do so. Of course I'm a little jealous of everyone who is going this year too but last year was a kind of one-shot affair, as it's just not realistic to travel all that way again, as long as we're in Japan anyway. Hopefully I'll get a chance again once we're living in North America, but until then, that's where Armchair BEA comes in, a kind of virtual version of the main event.

I haven't actually been reading a lot, or blogging much at all, since the huge earthquake and tsunami in March (we're fine, it was scary but we weren't directly affected), and actually even before that as well, but I'm hoping Armchair BEA will help me get back on track. So for Day One of Armchair BEA, a little about me, and my little corner of the blogosphere, with a couple questions borrowed from the Armchair BEA site.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

JLit Preview: 'The Devil's Whisper' and 'The Sleeping Dragon' by Miyuki Miyabe

After a bit of an interruption, due to that darn earth shifting like it did, I'd like to restart previewing some Japanese literature here. As I mentioned in the introduction post, the idea behind these JLit Preview posts is to simply share with you some Japanese lit titles that I'm looking forward to reading. If you've already read any of these books, let me know and I'll add a link to your review. If you haven't, then hopefully you'll discover something new to read. Because we all like finding new books to covet, right? Today, tying in with the Hello Japan! mini-challenge for May, two books by the popular author Miyuki Miyabe.

The Devil's Whisper by Miyuki Miyabe
Original title: 魔術はささやく (Majutsu wa sasayaku)
First published in Japan, 1989
English translation, 2007, Kodansha International
Translated from the Japanese by Deborah Stuhr Iwabuchi
Miyabe is known for her slice-of-Japanese-life suspense novels - and The Devil's Whisper continues her winning ways. Three deaths come in quick succession: one girl jumps from the roof of a six-story building; another falls in front of a train; and a third is hit by a late-night taxi. But how are they related? And are they accidents, suicides... or murder?

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Hello Japan! mini-challenge: April links

Hello Japan!

Thank you to everyone who took part in the Hello Japan! mini-challenge for April. For April the topic was Back to School and the task was to learn something about Japan, with a very special prize. Click on the links below to visit everyone's posts. (Also my apologies for the delay in posting these links. It's been a busy couple of days.)

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Hello Japan! May mini-challenge: Mystery and Mayhem

Hello Japan!
Hello Japan! is a monthly mini-challenge focusing on Japanese literature and culture. Each month there is a new task which relates to some aspect of life in Japan. Anyone is welcome to join in any time. Everyone who completes the task will then be included in the drawing for that month's prize. For more information, just click on the Hello Japan! button above, or if you have any questions please feel free to email me at inspringthedawn AT gmail DOT com.

May's Topic

Like many in the rest of the world, the Japanese also love a good mystery. Detective fiction is especially popular, but all kinds of mysteries are happily consumed on a regular basis. The top authors and TV shows are often detective stories or the writers thereof. Whether you normally read mysteries, or watch crime shows, or not, they can be a fun way to see another side of Japan that you might not experience otherwise.