Easy to Read Manga! Japanese Book Reviews #1

So people have been asking for different types of content. As people seem to struggle in initially finding content, I thought it would be a cool idea to share with you some of the stuff that I have read in terms of manga and books. I will probably do more of these in the future but for now here are some to get you started. I can also do other types of media if requested.


The first “book” I read was the first of the Dragonball manga. I think it was recommended to me by someone else in the community but I forgot who. Either way, it’s simple and easy to read with very few kanji. Perfect if you are just starting to read. I am not overly keen on the story myself and have never followed the Dragonball series before but it was interesting enough to keep me reading until the end. I didn’t pick up the next book, however, if you are a fan of the series and have watched it in English before then it could be great for getting you into reading Japanese.

Title: ドラゴンボール 完全版 (1)
Format: Comic/Manga – 214 Pages
Author: 鳥山 明
Furigana: Yes
Genre: 少年, Shounen
Type: Fiction
Color: Some colour, some black and white.
Illustrations: Yes
Reading Level: Beginner
Amazon: Dragonball (Perfect version) Vol. 1 (Dragon Ball (Kanzen ban)) (in Japanese)


なんで時間がないんだ? (Why don’t I have any time?)

This was recommended by Khatz himself and I can see why. After reading this book I have managed to make myself a little bit more efficient in everyday life. A very good book with some good life hacks. The author also uses very simple language so it is very easy to read.

Title: なんで時間がないんだ?
Format: Paperback – 188 Pages
Author: 菅野 結希
Furigana: None
Genre: Self help
Type: Nonfiction
Reading Level: Lower Intermediate
Amazon: なんで時間がないんだ?

death note books

I highly recommend this series! It’s great manga to get you into reading Japanese.

Death Note

Death Note is one of the reasons I started learning the language. I first saw a subtitled version of the film on TV as a teenager and loved it, so naturally I got the full manga set on purchasing my first set of Japanese books. The manga is really enjoyable with some parts getting a bit dull near the end. However, the first half of the series and the ending are literally SOOO GOOD. I got goosebumps reading it and at the time I couldn’t understand much Japanese. IT WAS THAT GOOD. I highly recommend this one.

Title: Death Note/デスノート
Format: Comic/Manga
Authors: 大場 つぐみ, 小畑 健
Furigana: Yes
Genre: 少年, Shounen
Type: Fiction
Color: Black and white.
Illustrations: Yes
Reading Level: Lower Intermediate to Advanced
Amazon: DEATH NOTE コミック 全13巻完結セット (ジャンプ・コミックス)


Hopefully this gets you reading! If not then click here for volume 2!

I will do more of these in the future and possibly other content as well. Let me know what you guys think and what content you would be interested in. 🙂



By Matthew Hawkins


Here are some of my favorite tools and sites for learning Japanese

Thank you for reading this blog post, which I hope you found useful for learning Japanese. Here are some of the most useful websites that I’ve found for finding Japanese content to use for immersion as well as some really useful learning tools to help you through your Japanese studies. Some of these are affiliate links which just means that if you decide to use these sites by clicking the following links, then I will earn a commission. But honestly speaking, these are the sites that I use and recommend language learners, even my friends, to use anyway.

Anki Tools: To get started, I really like Migaku for Anki. By itself, Anki is already a super useful tool for language learners but Migaku allows for integration with websites like YouTube and Netflix, allowing it’s users to create flashcards from the shows and videos that they are watching, as they are watching them. If you use my link you can get an extra month for free.

Speaking Practice: For this I absolutely love iTalki. There are thousands of Japanese teachers on the platform that are available at all times of the day to have conversations with you, in Japanese. Some teachers take a more traditional approach while others are just there to chat, these are the ones I would recommend if you are looking to improve your conversational Japanese. Lessons start from just $5 and there’s no long term commitment, I highly recommend them.

Immersion: I’ve used a lot of different earphones / headphones over the years but by far the one that has come out on top is the NENRENT S570. This is a singular in-ear earphone that matches your skin tone to keep it discrete, meaning you can listen to the language you are learning while at work, or school. For a full list of tools and gadgets I recommend for maximizing your immersion time, check out this blog post.