What would you be willing to do to find the one that got away? Would you travel to another country? Would you comb the streets of a foreign city? Such questions form the basis of Tokyo Story by Tereza Mackova.
Tokyo Story, Tereza Mackova’s debut novel, tells the tale of Alice. In her mid-twenties and just out of college, Alice is a quiet and sensible girl. Still, the man she loved, or the man she thought she loved, had gone home to his family two years prior. Her relationship with Katsu had been short but intense, and she wanted him back. The only clue she had about him was that he was in Tokyo, so to Tokyo Alice goes.
Everything about the city is foreign to Alice, except for some of the language that she has learned. A chance meeting brings Hiraku across her path. Hiraku is about the same age and returning home to Japan after studying in the United States. He’s stylish, charming and readily admired by everyone he meets. He decides he will be the guide that Alice needs to find her beloved Katsu.
Tokyo Story is a fun romp through the streets of Tokyo filled with lighthearted and sometimes awkward moments, as Alice seems to be inclined to misadventures. There are several laugh-out-loud moments as the accident-prone girl makes more than one lapse in judgment.
The language throughout the book is clean and appropriate for even a teenage audience. The storytelling is light and makes for a fast read and enjoyable read.
The Not So Good
I can honestly say that there wasn’t anything that I didn’t like about this book. It follows a typical romantic comedy trajectory, which means at times some of the scenes are a little silly. However, that silliness is integral to the genre and well-placed where it shows up in the novel.
If you are a fan of smart humor and contemporary romance, you will enjoy Tokyo Story. The characters are both likable and relatable, but honest enough that you can see their flaws and imperfections. Alice and Hiraku are individuals you would want to be friends with.
In conclusion, it was also a pleasant experience to learn a little more about Tokyo and to learn a few Japanese words along the way. The author does an excellent job of highlighting the culture and social norms of the area.
Final rating: 5 of 5 Stars
About Tereza Mackova
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