This is an incomplete list of all the Level 2 books available from the Pierce County Library; it’ll be updated as I keep reading them.

From Extensive Reading in Japanese, the definition of a Level 2 book:

Level 2: Mainly hiragana and katakana text. If there are kanji, furigana is given for each kanji. The text is longer but still contains a lot of pictures to aid student comprehension. Japanese native readers would be five to eight years old.

I’ve added Amazon links for the benefit of having title images and just in case anyone wants to subsidize my reading, but if you’re interested in ordering any of these, I’d also recommend you look them up on Kinokuniya’s website and compare shipping costs. Also, all title translations are my own unless otherwise indicated, names are family name first, then given name, and 作 and 絵 mean “author” and “illustrator,” respectively.

Miffy and Melanie
作/絵:ディック・ブルーナ(Dick Bruna)
Level 2 絵本, 26 pages, 180 words (est.) ★★★★☆ Hardcover

I actually started trying out extensive reading last spring, when I lived in Ann Arbor, and the A2 library system had four or five of these translations of the Miffy books. I loved them! Reading them almost as quickly as I could read English made me happy. By now I am only reading picture books out of a vague sense of obligation to my poorly thought-out resolution of reading all the Japanese children’s books in the Tacoma library, but when I saw this one on the Pierce county library shelf I couldn’t help but check it out.

A Harp Seal Mother and Child
写真:福田 幸広(ふくだ ゆきひろ, Fukuda Yukihiro)
文:結城 モイラ(ゆうき もいら, Yūki Moira)
Level 2 絵本, 28 pages, 500 words (est.) ★★★★☆ Hardcover

I’ve got a strong preference for this kind of level 2 book with regards to adult extensive reading, and not just because there is an adorable picture of an upside-down baby seal: it’s nice to follow a baby seal’s life and learn something new at the same time you’re practicing Japanese.


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