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Saiunkoku Monogatari and stuffs

May 17th, 2006 (02:53 pm)

current mood: amused

I think I'll start with "stuffs" ^^;

Rosetta posted today with a summary for Skip Beat, so hopefully we'll be seeing the next chapter for FB come out in the next few days or so. It's going to be weird going to FB after being so engrossed in Saiunkoku. :P

Waaah! I think I'm broke. (No idea. That's bad. :P ) I finally put in my order to Amazon for books. I decided since it's spring/summer, there should be no stupid idiocy courtesy of the fools at DHL who don't seem to comprehend that courier service doesn't equal overseas flight time plus >5 days for local delivery. Yeesh!

So, yesterday didn't see too much progress as I discovered vol 3 for the novel has been reULed and fixed. I'm really looking forward to when the books get here. Reading novel scans on the computer is extremely hard on the eyes. >_< Anyhow, I'm not sure if I like vol 2 more or vol 3. ^^; They both have some really interesting character development.

I was thinking of posting a quick summary of vol 3, but really should do vol 2 first, and, when glancing through #2, I ran across Ryuuki's little nightmare at the beginning of the novel. *laughs* Poor Ryuuki! BUT... there's a page missing at the end of the dream / beginning of the next scene! Aaarrghh!!! Although even with the jump, it's easy to guess a bit of what happened in the middle. :P

Anyhow, this novel takes place in the summer in the midst of a heat wave, and it seems that during the three months since Shuurei left, Ryuuki's been sending her letters and gifts the whole time. ^^;; "It rained today, the fish in the pond are happy." But I love his latest gift to Shuurei. A curse doll. ^^;; Looks like Shou Taishi got him again. Of course, he does get his revenge later on. :P

Most likely there are some side stories that happen between book 2 and 3 (which takes place in late winter) from what I can tell. Book 2 is during the time up to when women are able to take the national exam. There are a lot of conditions placed on it, but the motion is eventually passed by the end of the book. Shuurei is then the first woman to take the exam. Book 3 is the story of post-qualifying exam, pre-assignment. Usually there's no major gap between the two, but when there's need, there's a delay in which the candidates are given appropriate assignments. By this volume though, Shuurei and Eigetsu (someone else who took the exam) have met Ryuuren (who isn't in the book except in passing mention, but poor Ran Shogun when he happens to hear Shuurei complain about Ryuuren to Eigetsu!) and Eigetsu's issue with alcohol is known by all except Shouka. Also, there's passing mention of some male ghost.

I'm thinking that these unknown bits are clarified in book... 6? which is a collection of short stories, but it's not one of the books that had been scanned from what I can tell. Also, between book 2 and book 4, Ryuuren comes to consider Shuurei and Eigetsu his friends but what made that come about isn't clear. Ryuuren's introduced and only mentioned in passing in book 3 as having been one of the people to take the exam (and some other complaints) but what exactly happened to get him to feel that way about the two and call them friends in book 4... Although it's also quite clear that he knows about Eigetsu and alcohol so again, it's most likely in the gap between books 2 and 3.

Anyhow, I think I'll get back to working on vol 1's prologue.


Posted by: Simply NANA (toriru4ever)
Posted at: May 17th, 2006 05:35 pm (UTC)

*weeps* you're teasing us!!! i'm glad you'll get the novels ^_^
someday i'll know enough japanese to start collecting novels *ZETTAI NI!!!*
do ryuuki kiss shuurei in the novel? in the manga he did (volume 1) ^o^

Posted by: Shadow (kagedreams)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 05:52 pm (UTC)

^^;; A little yes, but I do plan on writing up some summaries (novels 2 & 3) for folks once things settle down a little with the first novel.

To my knowledge, Ryuuki kisses Shuurei 3 times IIRC by the end of vol 3. The first two times are light kisses in front of others and Shuurei tries to slap him but doesn't... quite... succeed (she does hit him after the first one but for a different reason). ^^;; And at the end of vol 3, he gives her quite the kiss in private. ^_^

Vol 2 though... I really don't want to say too much about what happens in it until I can get a chance to write up a summary or until the anime shows that section (which will happen soon enough). It's got some really cute scenes in it and deserves to be done more fully.

Posted by: Simply NANA (toriru4ever)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 05:57 pm (UTC)

waaaaaaaaaaaaaaai! poor ryuuki hehe
but go him for being soooo brave and romantic ^_^

Posted by: sakurinha (cris_yoshida)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 02:12 am (UTC)

Thank you so much for your summaries! This novel´s unbelievable good! ^_^
Are there any good moments between the emperor and Shuurei?

Posted by: Shadow (kagedreams)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 05:56 pm (UTC)

With the two of them together... more in vol 3 than vol 2 I think. But there are some really good moments of the two when they're apart too. Poor Ryuuki really is like a love sick pup in Vol 2, and the one evening he manages to "sneak out" for an "evening tryst"... *laughs* I will explain later; when I write the general summary. ^^;;

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: June 5th, 2006 08:14 pm (UTC)
can't wait

I just want to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for the summaries of the novel, CD drama, etc. etc that you are doing for Saiunkoku. It is particularly helpful that you have knowledge of the novel and can fill in some details that the anime doesn't cover. Based on the tidbits you've shared, I can't wait for the anime to get more into volume 2 of the novel! THANKS again!!!

Posted by: beamspam mcmuppet (snapdragon76)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 12:45 pm (UTC)

What's this series about? I hear you and Mona talking about it and it's got me a little intrigued...

Posted by: Shadow (kagedreams)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 06:24 pm (UTC)

Saiunkoku Monogatari - the Story of the Country of Coloured Clouds... a lot of people see it as Fushigi Yuugi-like but I see it more as a lighter cross of 12 Kokuki and Anatolia Story. It takes place in the country Saiunkoku which is akin to ancient China. In the story, women are not allowed to hold public office positions. The country consists of eight provinces, each one named for the eight enlightened ones who'd helped the first emperor. That emperor fought back the spirits of the forest that had been running amok and brought peace to the country. Each province's ruling noble family name is the same as the province's name, and the common people are not allowed to hold the same name, nor use the noble's colour generally. The imperial family resides in Shi (purple) province and stands above all other families. The next two most important families are Ran (indigo) and Kou (crimson) because when combined, they make purple.

At the beginning of the story, six months have passed since the new Emperor took to the throne, but he hasn't been carrying out his duties. As a result, his advisors hatch a plan to try to bring him around.

In the capital, the Kou household is extremely poor and can barely make enough money to make ends meet. Their residence is massive and eats up all their earnings in upkeep. So when Advisor Shou approaches the daughter Shuurei with an offer for 500 gold pieces, she unthinkingly accepts without hearing the details. What she's asked to do however, is to turn the emperor around and re-tutor him such that he takes his responsibilities as ruler seriously. While carrying out this duty, Shuurei is to enter the Imperial Residence as the Emperor's consort. Along with Shuurei, the sole retainer(?) to the house, Shi Seiran, is to temporarily be assigned to the Emperor's personal guard. Seiran had been taken in by the Kou household 13 years earlier when, after being passed over to becoming the next head of the family, Shouka and his family were sent to the capital, and they found Seiran collapsed by the roadside on the way there.

The story begins with Shuurei getting Ryuuki (the new emperor) to take on his duties. Later, the story moves on to address the issue of women taking the National Exam to become a public official (something Shuurei had dreamt of becoming since she was a child) and continues to follow Shuurei as she follows that dream.

While it starts off very light, there's a lot of development that happens in the subsequent novels and the characters really grow. I find it really interesting (enough to get the novels :P ) and would suggest at least checking it out. ^_^

Posted by: beamspam mcmuppet (snapdragon76)
Posted at: May 19th, 2006 09:49 am (UTC)
Hachi/Takumi -- tenderness

It does sound interesting. Thank you for explaining it to me.

Is it a novel series or manga?

Posted by: Simply NANA (toriru4ever)
Posted at: May 18th, 2006 06:41 pm (UTC)

hehe you know you want to get on it !!! ^__^
glad i've managed to brainwash more into taking interest in saiunkoku ^3^

Posted by: beamspam mcmuppet (snapdragon76)
Posted at: May 19th, 2006 09:51 am (UTC)
NANA -- Nana K & Takumi (colorfilter)

Actually it was that one picture you posted that really got me interested.

"A series with hot bishies in it? Count me in!"

Posted by: The Hamster Of Death (vampyrichamster)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 03:06 pm (UTC)

Saiunkoku reminds me a lot of the Chinese period royal court romantic TV dramas I used to watch when I was growing up. It's a great series for me that way, in that it brings up some nice memories. The anime has about as many planned episodes as the average Hong Kong TV drama too. The novels sound madly cool. I would like to hunt for the scans, just to see what it's like, but compared to you, it'll probably take me a year to use my itty bitty Chinese/Japanese reading skills to get this far!

PS: How many books are they in total? Is it an ongoing series of novels in Japan?

Posted by: Shadow (kagedreams)
Posted at: June 11th, 2006 04:26 am (UTC)

Have you checked out the Saiunkoku Monogatari community on LJ? If you're curious about the novels, I'd suggest joining either it or the shousetsu communities. ^__^

So far there are ten books - 8 novesl and 2 short story collections - and it looks like it's still ongoing. The first manga volume will be published later this month in Japan.

Posted by: The Hamster Of Death (vampyrichamster)
Posted at: June 12th, 2006 11:40 am (UTC)

Thanks! I've since checked out both those communities following your user info too, and I'm considering joining the shousetsu comm. 8 books is a lot of material. No wonder it's planned for a 39-ep series. Saiunkoku is also a good candidate for aftermath OVAs, if the novels keep coming.

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