I’m JD, the Tsundoku Reader

O.K., so it's not literally a club

but it still feels like one if you can bond with others over an obsession with books and reading and stories and learning

Reading is my passion

What's this
place all about? And who the heck am I?

TsundokuClub.com arose from a desire to share my love of reading with the wider world, and to greedily digest more and more books and audiobook recommendations from fellow bibliophiles. SEND NEW! 

Hi! My name is
Jd Pelz

Reader, REviewer, Aspiring Audiobook narrator, eater, sleeper, REader, repeater

Time spent reading 80%
Responsible Adult 45%
Math Skills 29%

I spent the first part of my working life in academics  as a literature and writing teacher… now I’m reading for fun. What a difference! Hopefully you’ve had a chance to look around. You’ll notice I love Japanese novels, and audiobooks too. When I’m especially into a book I’ll have the paper copy on my nightstand, and the audiobook on my phone for when I’m doing errands or walking the dogs. If there was a way to just attach something to the linguistic processor in my brain, I’d have that thing implanted. I’d be an early adopter. Let’s call it a biblio-implant. Yes. (Did I mention I like speculative fiction too?)

extra
stuff.

Good to Know.

This site’s main focus is book reviews of quality fiction and non-fiction that may be older than the last six months. These are books that were bought with excitement and anticipation, but slowly accumulated and never made it to the bedside table.

New Books = Tsundoku

From time to time I read new releases, but it’s really up to the mood and the season. (I remember trying to read Life of Pi for the first time and being like, “No way, this is too much. I don’t get this at all.” I put it down, picked it up several times, and then finally read it on vacation near a pool. Wierd huh?)

Everyone Needs a Mascot

You might see Raffles (my cat) and my three mini-Labradoodles. They’re  my reading buddies. It’s nice to be able to curl up in front of the fire together and get our Hygge on.

Audiobook Recommendations

Audiobooks are increasingly popular, and the narration is an art form unto itself. I’ll try to include reviews of excellent audio versions of my favourite books. 

Books I Love

Books I'm Obessed with

Japanese Literature

(the wild wild east)

Japanese literature is something that I am always reading and re-reading. Every new translation I can get my hands on, whether it’s popular, classic, or historical, interests me. Over the years I have traveled there extensively and have made many friends, both expats and Japanese, who have helped to bring a new dimension to my reading. I’m always interested in new authors, or new translations of old authors.

Speculative Fiction

(no zombies please)

There is something very moving and profound about travelling in a world that has been altered beyond recognition of what we currently know. Dystopia, Utopia, Post-Apocalyptic. This is a slippery genre difficult to categorize because the possibilities are endless. It’s also difficult to mine because it tends not to be popular. Once in a while a real gem breaks through (Peter Heller’s “The Dog Stars”) But there are also wonderfully written novels only a few decades old that are being forgotten: J.G. Ballard’s “The Drowned World” or George R. Stewart’s “The Earth Abides”.
I welcome all suggestions here (although, please no traditional horror or zombie stuff).

Romance

(but not really)

Thanks to programs like the BBC’s “Desert Island Discs” (an amazing Podcast – great for binging, great for music), I have been exposed to quite lovely British authors that have opened a whole new dimension to my reader life, and to my view of the world in general. Sadly, for a long time, novels that focused on love and relationships, even if they weren’t focused on (R)omance, were put into that genre. It’s no secret there is a stigma against romance novels in the literary world. (They’re “trashy”, “They aren’t literature”, many say). But I have learned to say ‘Who cares!’ Recently I have begun devouring the novels of Rosamund Pilcher and Joanna Trollope. Their books have so much emotional verity and genuine heart, which is hard to find these days in any aspect of popular culture. I’m learning. And I love it.

“Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.” 

Virginia Woolf, A Room of One’s Own

Please Send Me Your Audiobook Suggestions Too

I listen to at least three, sometimes four audiobooks per month. This is a little different because while the content matters, the narrator has to be exceptional, otherwise it falls flat. This is where I can really explore things my eyes might not have the stamina to read. If you have any great audiobook suggestions for books on science, sociology, anthropology, humour, anything! Fiction of course, and even currents affairs. As long as the narrator is engaging. 

You can contact me by email: reader@tsundokuclub.com

or follow the social media links below