Mori – A Bride’s Story, and another reading challenge

Mori, Kaoru. 2011. A Bride’s Story. Translated by William Flanagan. First Yen Press ed. Vol. 1. A Bride’s Story. New York: Yen Press.
9780316180993 0316180998 WordlCat record


I heard about this lovely book from Unshelved and added it to Goodreads 20 March 2012. I acquired a copy from my public library and, thankfully, they have rest of the volumes published so far. [According to Wikipedia it is still ongoing.]
The book reads from right to left in the traditional Japanese format. I knew I was supposed to start at “the back” and read “forward” but it took me a couple pages to quickly figure out to read the page right-to-left, top-to-bottom. The story (narration and art) made it fairly evident quickly though.

This is a historic romance from the Silk Road in Turkic Central Asia in the late 19th century. Amir is a 20-year-old bride to a boy eight years her junior, Karluk. Her family is still nomadic in the summer while the husband’s family has settled down in the last couple generations.

I was expecting not to like it due to potential gender issues but it is so far a very liberating and progressive tale. Her young husband’s extended family have really taken a liking to (and appreciation of) her. A show-down is coming with her family soon.

As soon as I was done with it I checked the library and most volumes are available so I requested volumes two and three. It is quite lovely and I look forward to reading more of Amir and Karluk’s adventures and watching as their relationship grows despite its unconventionality.

Highly recommended. 5 of 5 stars.

This is also the 1st book I am posting abut for my 2015 8th Annual Graphic Novel/Manga Challenge. I read another one before this one yesterday but I do not have my post ready yet.

Update: 02 January 2015 Split the new book challenge information into its own post as it always should have been.

A Bride’s Story ticks off 6 of the 50 items in that challenge: female author, set in different country, finish in a day, graphic novel. author never read before, translation. I could possibly justify a 7th with written by someone under 30 but it appears Mori was barely 31 when first volume appeared in Japan. Or she was just 30; Wikipedia is confused. Oh well. There’ll be someone else.

Kick-Off Surroundings

I was unable to participate in the Digital Writing Month Launch Party celebration so this is my response, particularly to the Kick-Off Surroundings bit.

The kick-off happened at 12:01AM UTC 1 November which was 5 pm Halloween here in Oregon. I had just closed the library at a few minutes after and then had to catch a bus to the bottom of the hill to meet some folks. I was also having a discussion with one of my usual patrons while waiting. I did check my phone for the kick-off post and had a quick look. Saw I wouldn’t get any done on time. No worries. I was with friends and had a good grip on ideas already.

We were supposed to accomplish three tasks within the 1st hour:

  • Who are you? Post a Vine to Twitter, due by 20 min.
  • Where are you? [Environment] 3 photos to Twitter, due by 40 min.
  • What are you going to do? [Goals] Roster and abridged version to Twitter

I was not going to bother with the first. Just not interested. And that’s OK. “The point is creation; the method to the madness is up to you.” Sean Michael Morris in Invention, Ambition, Fearlessness: Digital Writing Month 2014

Sure. The idea is to push one’s boundaries, creativity, and so forth. I plan on doing that. And while I may well ignore some of the prompts and perhaps not participate in everything, I did the same last time. Some of the new things I did to push my limits worked and some didn’t. That’s OK, too.

This post serves as my Kick-Off Environment post, which stands in way “late” for the three tweets. I did post my goals to the roster and had earlier tweeted my goals but did so again. It was definitely after the party was over by a couple hours but not many folks got to that part anyway.

Photo #1

Dr. Evelyn Crook and Mistress Quantum Sum before Halloween tarot readings for the Humane Society at Broken Top Bottle Shop & Ale Café.

Dr. Evelyn Crook and Mistress Quantum Sum before Halloween tarot readings for the Humane Society at Broken Top Bottle Shop & Ale Café. [somewhat processed]

Sara and Emily prior to giving their first readings of the night. They were doing Halloween tarot readings for charity at our local, Broken Top Bottle Shop & Ale Café (BTBS). When I got there, Sara was with three of our friends who I joined until they headed out. Not a whole lot later another couple friends, along with two more new-to-me friends, joined me for much of the evening. While we love BTBS we do not spend many Friday evenings there. Halloween was a lot more mellow than I figured it’d be though.

Photo #2

Cooler case and BTBS sign [heavily processed]

Cooler case and BTBS sign [heavily processed]

I am (consciously) unclear as to what this image means to me or the story I am trying to tell. I have an as yet undiagnosed illness, since this summer, that is playing havoc with me in many ways. For some reason this appealed to me. I, and Sara, spend a lot of time in front of these colors. They are a refuge, of sorts. This image is anything but refuge-like though. The unprocessed image is. So. This. Is a story element. Yet to be fully realized.

Photo #3

Temperance tarot card [little processing]

Temperance tarot card [little processing]

For the significance of this photo you will have to read my next post, which is thankfully 95% written already. Past me doing current me a favor [Wickett’s Law/Rule].

This was a large part of my environment for the kick-off of Digital Writing Month 2014.

Temperance. Am going to have to spend some time with that concept.