Japanese, Miscellaneous

Hondarake: Full of Books


昨日 町 に 行ったから、「本だらけ フル・オブ・ブックス」と言う 本屋に 行く こと に した。本だらけ は シドニー の 一番大きい 日本語 の 古本屋。私 の 写真 を 見て。本当に フル・オブ・ブックスね!そこ で 色々な 日本語 の 本 を 買う こと が できる。たとえば、ざっしや料理書やまんがなどが 全部 ある。CD と とても 安い 英語 の 本 も ある。そして、まんが リディング・ラウンジ で ゆっくり まんが を 読んで も いい。

Yesterday I went to the city, so I decided to go to the “Hondarake: Full of Books” bookshop.  Hondarake is Sydney’s biggest second-hand Japanese bookstore.  Look at my photo- it’s really full of books isn’t it!  You can buy all types of Japanese books there, such as magazines, cookbooks, comics and lots more.  They even have CDs and some cheap English novels too.  There is also a Manga Reading Lounge where you can read comics at your leisure.

I remember reading some other language blogs writing about how their respective cities had Book-Off stores (worldwide secondhand Japanese bookstore chain – except for Australia naturally =_=) so I did a quick Google search to see if Sydney had something similar: and lo and behold! ^^ I almost forgot about it and was walking back to the station to catch the train home, then I just had this sudden, subtle brainwave along the lines of SECOND HAND JAPANESE BOOKS GO GO GO GO GO.


To say that the shop’s location is non-descript could be a bit of an underestimate.  It’s above a 7/11 convenience store.  But they’ve helpfully posted some signs in the dodgy stairwell to reassure you that you are not heading to some massage parlour.

ImageSome contact details if any of you ever come to Sydney / are Sydneysiders.  They do have an online store, but having never ordered from there myself, I can’t tell you how comprehensive the catalogue is.  In terms of the physical store, it really is just full of floor to ceiling shelves of goodies for less than $10: so enjoy! ^^  Now on to what I bought…

ImageFrom the kids section: a Doraemon kanji book and a book of Japanese history!  I deliberated over some cookbooks but decided against it because I figured it’d be hard to procure the required ingredients anyhow.  And yes these books are secondhand.  I’m not sure how Hondarake comes by their books (clearance from Kinokuniya perhaps?) but all of their products are basically pristine, some even come in plastic wrapping still!  These two only set me back $12.60!

ImageThe Doraemon book is actually a very valuable, inexpensive and fun learning resource!  It has 560 kanji characters – those usually learnt by Japanese primary schoolkids in grades 2,3 and 4.  Written like that, it sounds embarrassing, but if you think about it, if these are the kanji that Japanese children have to learn so early on, it’s more than likely that they’re high-frequency right?  Each page has the on and kun readings, number of strokes, meaning, common uses as well as a diagram of the origin and development of the pictograph.  PLUS a comic of everybody’s favourite outer-space robot cat, Doraemon, to help you remember!  This book has pretty much the same content as books like Basic Kanji Book etc but is so much less dry.  Highly recommend! ^_^

ImageThe history book (it’s a series, I just bought the first book though) has comics and explanations of Japanese history.  As seen here, the first chapter is about the mammoths in Hokkaido.  I started reading it on the train home but I was too tired and nodded off >.<  I read on Hangukdrama that non-fiction books are easier to read, and I’m now inclined to agree, because there are less informal tenses, have okurigana etc.  So don’t be scared to take the plunge!

In other news, my French friend (I did a 2 month homestay 2 years ago, but we’re still in contact) sent me a birthday present! Merci beaucoup!!


Image(Oksa Pollock is a French young-adultish/teen fantasy series – it’s a good read, for any French learners out there!  I’m now up to the third book)

And I also bought a new perfume (the original reason for my being in the city):

2013-12-30 16.45.23 But that’s neither nor there is it?

Do you guys have any favourite bookstores where you live?  Or even a favourite perfume 😀 ?

Thanks for reading, and Happy New Year too!



6 thoughts on “Hondarake: Full of Books

  1. 明けましておめでとう!良いお年をお迎えください!

    • Yes I did – the rain man right? I’d never actually thought about the deeper meaning of the phrases used in the comics, but it made me look at Doraemon in a new light haha, it was an interesting post 😀

      The comics are good for Japanese reading practice though ^_^

      • Quite true indeed. I actually got Mentatei Conan for my reading… but you know what happened? I actually lost interest in anime and games recently. So im just reading about music and song lyrics these days haha

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