Last weekend, after a long walk around Yokohama we ended up in a curious tower. It turns out that it is one of the tallest lighthouses in Tokyo bay (58 meters/192 feet tall), it has an observatory open to the public and it is surrounded by a park. Built in 1986, in the midst of the Japanese economic boom, with a sumptuous design for just being a simple lighthouse. I like the retrofuturistic halo that it has.
Symbol Tower Official Website and instructions on how to get there.
Jet Black and the Ninja Wind is one of the best novels where the action is based in Japan I’ve ever read. It is a young Adult novel about the last living female ninja and her quest to save her tribe and her own life.
Action, Japanese culture and history (learning a lot about Japanese indigenous people), great and deep characters, intrigue, mythology and ninja are all present in a plot that will keep you reading from the very beginning bring your imagination to travel to Japan through beautiful descriptions. After finishing reading the book I decided that I have to visit Osore-san (Sacred Mt. Osore in the novel), a remote mountain at the north of Honshu.
The protagonist, Jet Black, travels to Japan after her mother dies. Upon her arrival to Japan she travels to Kanabe, a remote village where she meets her grandfather for the first time. She soon commits to protect her family treasure…
Available on Amazon and Tuttle Publishing!
Also, the book has an official trailer. Yes, a novel with a trailer!
And also the trailer, behind the Scenes. Skydancing aerial artist, sword-slayer, dancer, yogini and kunoichi Angelica Kushi spins her ninja tricks in this behind-the-scenes reel from the making of the book trailer for “Jet Black and the Ninja Wind”
More about the author at LezaloWitz.com
Last year I kept using my Instagram @kirainet frequently. It is one of the apps that I use in my iPhone 4. I like to see the timeline to see what people is doing around the world and I like to take photos with my iPhone because it continuously makes me to look around in order to get “The Picture”. Every day I “force” myself to capture something interesting with my iPhone and then publish it on my Instagram. These are the photos that I took in 2013 that had more than 250 likes. It seems like some of the themes that people like most are skies and sunsets
If you liked my photos you can follow me on Instagram!
Ochanomizu is a must-see location for guitar lovers that come to Tokyo. Ochanomizu is a street plenty of shops, some of them occupying whole buildings, specialized in guitars and string instruments in general.
More cats than people live in Tashirojima, an island in Miyagi Prefecture. According to the local belief of the island, feeding the cats will bring good luck and wealth. They even have some temples dedicated to cats, which are considered some kind of local god (kami). In Tashirojima only around 100 people live but the number of cats…
Yesterday the first tuna auction of the year was held in Tsukiji where the first tuna of the year, weighting 230 kg, was sold for 7.36 million yen (around 70,000 dollars/50,000 euros). The price is far cheaper than the tuna sold in the auction 3 years ago which was sold for 32.49 million yen.
Photo by Mainichi
Here is a list of the manga series that sold the most volumes during 2013 in Japan. What manga series are you following? Any recommendations?
1 – One Piece
Still the undisputed number one manga and anime in Japan and overseas. This year 18 million One Piece volumes were sold in Japan.
2 – Attack on Titan – 進撃の巨人
The manga written and drawn by Hajime Isayama ranks second on the list and, with 16 millions volumes sold, is the only one that comes close to the top spot occupied by One Piece. Attack on Titan is set in an alternative middle-ages world in which the Titans (huge creatures) have almost annihilated humankind. Only a small number of humans still survive by living in cities surrounded by walls.
3 – Kuroko’s Basketball – 黒子のバスケ
A basketball manga. Is this the Slam Dunk of this decade?
4 – Magi
A fantasy shōnen manga written and drawn by Shinobu Otaka that is set in an alternative past. 18 volumes have been published since the manga started in 2009.
5 – Naruto
Next to One Piece, Naruto is the manga that has been on the list for most years. However its popularity is running out of steam. I used to follow the anime years ago but I ended up getting bored.
6 – Silver Spoon – 銀の匙
It tells us the life and adventures of a student of a fictitious high school in Hokkaido. The anime series has started being aired in Fuji TV this year which has helped the sales of the manga.
7 – Assassination Classroom – 暗殺教室
A fantasy manga in which the students of a school have been promised a 10 billion Yen reward for assassinating their professor. Their professor turns out to be a powerful creature that destroyed 70% of the moon and has the plan to destroyed our planet.
8 – Hunter x Hunter
Next to Naruto and One Piece it is the manga that has been on the top spots of the list for most years. After 15 years the adventures of Gon seem like are not ending anytime soon.
9 – Fairy Tail
The third fantasy manga in the Top 10. The two main characters are a wizard boy and a teen wizard girl.
10 – Terra Formars
This is the only manga on the list that I am currently following (I have read the seven released volumes). It is a science fiction manga in which Mars has been terraformed by sending cockroaches and mold. Several centuries later 6 humans travel to Mars, the terraforming has worked, the only problem is that the cockroaches have mutated and have become dangerous creatures. The six people of the crew are killed by the mutant cockroaches. Years later a multinational sends a mission to Mars to exterminate the mutant cockroaches…
Gintama and Bleach are still very popular in Japan however they were not able to make the Top 10 in 2013.
Ranking found in Oricon.co.jp.
I started 2013 in Spain where I took the first pictures of the year. I spent the rest of the year in Japan taking photos with my Nikon D800, Fuji X100 and my Iphone 4. The only addition to my photography equipment this year was a Nikon 28-70mm f/2.8D lens (until now I just had a 50mm f/1.2 lens). I am very happy with the new lens, it has helped me take photos with a different style than that captured with the 50mm.
This year more and better photos!
You can see all the photos in this Flickr set and download them in high resolution.
Best photos of past years: