Title: My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life
Author: Rachel Cohn
Genre: YA Contemporary
Release Date: December 18th, 2018
Source: ARC received from publisher which did not influence my opinion
My rating: 4.5 stars
"I'm here to take you to live with your father. In Tokyo, Japan! Happy birthday!"
In the Land of the Rising Sun, where high culture meets high kitsch, and fashion and technology are at the forefront of the First World's future, the foreign-born teen elite attend ICS-the International Collegiate School of Tokyo. Their accents are fluid. Their homes are ridiculously posh. Their sports games often involve a (private) plane trip to another country. They miss school because of jet lag and visa issues. When they get in trouble, they seek diplomatic immunity.
Enter foster-kid-out-of-water Elle Zoellner, who, on her sixteenth birthday discovers that her long-lost father, Kenji Takahari, is actually a Japanese hotel mogul and wants her to come live with him. Um, yes, please! Elle jets off first class from Washington D.C. to Tokyo, which seems like a dream come true. Until she meets her enigmatic father, her way-too-fab aunt, and her hyper-critical grandmother, who seems to wish Elle didn't exist. In an effort to please her new family, Elle falls in with the Ex-Brats, a troupe of uber-cool international kids who spend money like it's air. But when she starts to crush on a boy named Ryuu, who's frozen out by the Brats and despised by her new family, her already tenuous living situation just might implode.
My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life is about learning what it is to be a family, and finding the inner strength to be yourself, even in the most extreme circumstances.
Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, The Book Depository
I really was intrigued by the premise of this one, so excited to get to read it early. This was a page-turner, and I zipped through it in no time. I loved learning about life in Tokyo so much. I'm going to start calling my sodas "dark sugar water". I mean think about it, it's what they are, and who would think that a dark water would be something good? Well, I guess everyone loves coffee and tea, and they're dark water in a way. There was so much about Japan that I think would be awesome, and so much that would be no fun to get used to. For instance, the way you put money on a tray and hand to the person taking your money. It was definitely interesting to hear the "rules" for how to eat sushi. I've only had it once, and wasn't completely impressed with it. I need to try it again though, I think. I love the Christmas tradition of KFC and a date. I love how there is a subway train that is just for women at certain times. I love how orderly everything was, even when it was as crowded as you would see in places like NYC. The banter between Elle and Ryuu was really fun. The dynamic of Elle's family in Japan was very fascinating, and heart-breaking at the same time. I felt like the end was almost wrapped up really quickly. But I like how it was done, so I still was happy with how it all ended up. A fun, sweet, easy to read contemporary YA, that I will definitely be putting in my school library.
About the Author:
Rachel Cohn is the bestselling, award-winning author of many books. She lives in Los Angeles with two very cool cats named McNulty and Bunk.
- 3 winners will receive finished copies of MY ALMOST FLAWLESS TOKYO DREAM LIFE, US only.
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