I spend more time reading than tending to important life matters. My wife has even threatened to leave me and my books on several occasions. But not to matter; I’ve found an alternative to the hand-torch and a pillow to hide in the filth of literature: the iDevice. Stanza and eReader Pro have supplied most of my needs till now, but when I feel adventurous, or simply can’t find a great read in English, I turn to Japanese texts. One of the problems however, is that Japanese texts don’t read as naturally when displayed horizontally. i文庫 (iBunko) is a Japanese reader which doesn’t compete directly compete with my favourites. Rather, it exists alongside both apps as a great alternative reader for the highly literate Japanese market and for those who are interested in reading Japanese texts.
Like PC Dr. Momo, The Long Pencil is a digital book that features both Japanese and English text. But unlike Dr. Momo, it has a complete audio narration in both languages, and for fun, a lively musical track that fits the children’s literature genre very well.
Previously, I reviewed one of Nihon IR‘s other popular English Language study tools, 出る順. Dr. コーパス is similar in its approach in that it isolates vocabulary and allows students to select from different review methods. Both apps are geared for English study, but as I hope to show, are excellent tools for learning Japanese. While this review will be short, it will focus on how and/or if Nihon IR have managed to create a good study formula.