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The 2nd Golden Elephant Award 2011, Status of Jury Process.

The 2nd Golden Elephant Award 2011, Status of Jury Process.

Selected for 2nd Qualification not in particular order

Selected for 2nd Qualification not in particular order
  • “Thanks Night” Tatsuo Nemoto
  • “The Roppongi Grasshopper” Haruka Suzuki
  • “gray to men” Tomotake Ishikawa
  • “Let The Eagle Down” Norio Mukai
  • “Christian Samurai’s Devil” Tougenji
  • “The First One” Takaharu Ohyama
  • “Irias 81” Hyde Works
  • “The Eagle Claw” Toshio Saito
  • “At the Café of Owls” Mikito Chinen
  • “The Cross of Silver” Mikito Chinen
  • “Hunting Leviathan” Shu Yajima
  • “Meet Your Suicide Undertaker” Ban Ohki
  • “The Inbred” Tomohiro Nako
  • “The Icy Road, Epitaph to the Sun” Nobuhiro Tanikado
  • “The Beam of Starry Light” Tetsushi Sawatari
  • “The Power to Dream” Yasunari Aizu
  • “Frequency Gizmo—Alto’s Seven Vacuum Tubes” Uka Kitabayashi

"Thanks Night" Tatsuo Nemoto

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Critique
The story is a solid situation thriller taking place at once-a-year all-you-can-eat premium feast. Well written. It is often hard to attract readers with a genocidal story with almost no survivors, but this one was such a page-turner. There seems to be a need for editorial care to pull all foreshadowing together, but overall, wording, story-telling, character depiction, settings, and dialogues are all nicely done.

"The Roppongi Grasshopper" Haruka Suzuki

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Critique
This action story takes place in Roppongi and talks about two main junior-high students in escape from mysterious sect after rescuing a daughter of an underworld family, and a "searcher" called Grasshopper. It is rather slow paced up to meeting Grasshopper, but the story rolls rapidly and more excitingly when and after boys meet "supernatural talents". The story focuses on tight friendship between of the two, which can potentially target teenagers as main target, if not general.

"gray to men" Tomotake Ishikawa

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Critique
This vendetta story seems to be based on actual "Hikari City Mother and Child Murder" case. The message or desire is very vocal to turn over the unfair society where only the rich and the corrupted take benefits, while most labor force keeps getting themselves exploited. The plot is a bit on unorganized side, but it reads well and gives good impression overall.

"Let The Eagle Down" Norio Mukai

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Critique
A hard-boiled suspense talks about dark schemes of IT company and an eastern nation. Well researched and information is very dense. Use of IT technology including satellite broadcasting and IC card security is superior. Moreover, story backgrounds and characters are vividly depicted using settings such as Korean residents, N-Korean residents in Japan, N-Korean returnees, and places like Osaka and Busan.

"Christian Samurai's Devil" Tougenji

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Critique
Historical fantasy of "what-if" a Christian Samurai lord had a devil as his right-hand man in 16th century Japan. The author successfully created a historical fiction based on actual figures and events. Writing skill is good. The main character Kanren is as straight as an arrow, which could gather strong empathy for his character. In the latter half, meeting Nobunaga Oda, the best known figure from back then, sets readers' expectations. The concept is in sync with the popular trend of feudal Japan.

"The First One" Takaharu Ohyama

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Critique
Ecology investigation in the Bering Sea leads to abnormal soar in the sea water temperature. This omen will eventually reveal international backdoor trading and controlled stock prices on next-generation energy resources. It's a tough read due to a lot of character appearances and quick shifts of scenes. However, the story is worth a read because it not only picks up contemporary news topics such as global warming and new resources, but also the author brings up his unique solution via storytelling that unfolds rather puzzled affairs.

"Irias 81" Hyde Works

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Critique
A traumatized girl, after picking up a computer "Shogi" Japanese chess game as rehabilitation tool, enters professional field. She then goes in and out of pseudo-dream world where she encounters her rival male chess player. Easy read, with ups and downs in nicely composed Sci-Fi plot. Author is particular with gender issue surrounding female chess players. Also, it was great idea to broadcast CG rendered chess games.

"The Eagle Claw" Toshio Saito

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Critique
Based on 1979 Iran Hostage Crisis and its rescue mission called "Operation Eagle Claw" that failed in reality with 8 casualties. Escape scenes thrilling, and political game among US, Iran, and Japan elevating the tension in background, the story touches the incident in ever greater scale for a novel. This motif also helps the appearance of Japanese businessman be reasonable enough. This incident might be long forgotten in the history, but with entanglements in the Middle East leading up to now, this topic is rather fresh as it can ever be.

"At the Café of Owls" Mikito Chinen

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Critique
A college student stepping into a café, a nest of people with supernatural talents, where he finds out a forthcoming crime that involves his younger sister. The author adds action/ violence aspect in such quality of Kenzo Kitakata to a rather "light novel" feature. A thrilling page-turner. Story taking place in homo-social environment, nonetheless the violence adds nice noise to relations such as allies and enemies. It reads great as mystery as well.

"The Cross of Silver" Mikito Chinen

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Critique
Virus contagion called DoMS creates powerful super-humans or "Variants" who reside in segregated, reserve territories away from the human society. This story narrates incidents, drama, and romance that emerge in between variants and humans. Author's professional understanding of medicine adds depth and realism to the story. As news on SARS and New Influenza still hold our attention very much, political measures and pandemic disaster is a good formula to draw readers attention. With great surprise to close the story, this novel is solid as entertainment genre.

"Hunting Leviathan" Shu Yajima

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Critique
A disaster novel with fantasy genre, which reminds of "Gate" a light novel. Despite a "monster" disaster concept, the story is updated with contemporary history, technology, and the way people react, capturing the mood of current world. The style itself is rather light so it might be hard to penetrate heavy readers. Wording, compositions, and far-fetched plots are still on the weak side, but overall story-telling ability is highly evaluated.

"Meet Your Suicide Undertaker" Ban Ohki

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Critique
Although the story develops on dark theme of suicidal tendencies, the tone of writing is light and comedy-esque with some great surprises. Colorful and attractive characters such as condescending "suicide undertaker", suicide-candidate-turned-manager main character, and half-shrink-half-editor lady are providing refreshing reading experience.

"The Inbred" Tomohiro Nako

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Critique
The story depicts a long-lasting conflict between offspring of a family of special talent and a cult society from 1638 (Kan-ei 15th) to today. Episodes are told in good rhythm, going back and forth between 17th century and present day. In sub-text there is a hint of homo-social context, which could draw unique thinking process. The story accelerates into more picturesque association to a movie or animation towards the climax scene where main characters make a push to the cult society.

"The Icy Road, Epitaph to the Sun" Nobuhiro Tanikado

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Critique
A truck driver in the Arctic Circle, whose girlfriend is in vegetative state, risks his life to make money but finds himself deep in underworld connection. The story is a crime/ drama of a guy who fakes his death and gives up his job for all his sacrifice and feelings solely towards his love. Well written, well composed of moving episodes, it is a unstoppable page-turner.

"The Beam of Starry Light" Tetsushi Sawatari

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Critique
A mysterious figure of Japanese and Turkish descendent travels to the origin in Europe to make vengeance for family bloodshed. Almost intoxicative introduction, told in first-person view draws readers in. Light-footed style reads nicely too. Two main characters are in good contrast in between photographic memory and prosopagnosia. This setting could have been highlighted more, but the integrity of the story is achieved by good tempo and suspense. Greek myth also helps give depth.

"The Power to Dream" Yasunari Aizu

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Critique
Country born, a single parented boy finds his path of life, through a blessed encounter to a Thai mentor and kick boxing trainer while working as a gigolo. One would find the author's dense research on gigolo and kick boxing professionals. Great at narratives and compositional skills, the author provides just right distance from the main character, which helps keep readers' attention throughout. There is a fresh, brisk tone in overall story although motifs fall into the underworld and uncompromising combat sports.

"Frequency Gizmo—Alto's Seven Vacuum Tubes" Uka Kitabayashi

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Critique
A fantasy genre of a 12 year old boy Alto, taking a voyage to discover "legend of seven vacuum tubes" to save the world. The adventurous story consists of many episodes in spectacular scale. A squad of four, including Karin the girl, Tetta the boy, and Forte the dog fall into classical setting, but the imaginary "intellectual" vacuum tube called Push-Pull and selecting "music" as the concept of the world are both adding new dimension to the genre. Such challenge and efforts should be evaluated.
  • 2011年度 受賞作
  • Selected for final Qualification
  • Selected for 2nd Qualification