What is THE MOST POPULAR middle grade Japanese series book?  (In my opinion.  I’m too lazy to do actual research, but this is based on my observations.)

It is the EXTREMELY POPULAR “Kaidan Resutoran” series.  See photo below.


As you can see on the cover, the book is called “Thriller Restaurant” in English.  (Although the book is completely in Japanese and has never, to my knowledge, been translated into English.)

However, a much more accurate translation is “Ghost Story Restaurant”.

怪談=ghost story  (Kaidan)

レストラン=restaurant     (Resutoran)

(This seems obvious to me now.  However, for  a long time, I thought it was “Staircase Restaurant” because one other meaning of kaidan階段 is “staircase”.  Yeah, silly me.)


It is so popular that they made a DVD series based on it, as shown in the photo above.

Several years ago, I bought the first book for my son, thinking he would enjoy it.  However, he didn’t like it much.  So I took it and attempted to read it.

I was surprised because there’s not one story.  It’s just short story after short story, all unrelated.  Short little ghost stories for kids.  I didn’t really enjoy myself, and I quickly grew tired of learning odd vocabulary words like “eery” and “ghoulish” and “ghastly” which are really very little help to me for my JLPT or for real life.  So I gave up.  Yes, I am a QUITTER!

Now that my Japanese has improved, I would like to go back to these books and attempt them.  However, I have so much I want to study  (news, textbooks, and so on), so it’ll have to wait.