My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life
Author: Rachel Cohn
Pub. Date: December 18, 2018
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
Synopsis: “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.
I absolutely adore cute contemporaries, and aside from being drawn in by this gorgeous cover, the synopsis of this book really called out to me, and made me really want to read it. I had a feeling that it was going to be a really cute novel with important themes (think family), and that really appealed to me – who doesn’t love a book about family, right?
Anyway, all the expectations I had going into this book? They were exceeded by far. This book was one of the sweetest contemporaries I’ve read in a really long time, and I loved everything about it, from the setting to the characters, and the writing was exceptional.
I loved the main character. She really went through some stuff in this book, discovering family and being moved around – it had to be tough, but she learned a lot about herself through the obstacles she had to overcome. I think that was my favorite part about the book – I love character development and it seemed like the main character in this book really changed a lot from the beginning to the end. I love stories with strong characters.
The setting in My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life was also awesome – I’ve never exactly been to Tokyo, but you can tell the author has a lot of knowledge about the city because she did such a great job writing the setting. I felt like I learned a lot reading this, too.
Family in YA is one of my favorite themes – I love books that revolve around the closeness of families or family drama – anything really, as long as there are families involved. It was so wonderful to read a book that centered around the family theme, especially one that has been written so well!
While I haven’t read any other books by Rachel Cohn, it’s clear that I’ve become a fan after reading this, and I can’t wait to get my hands on the other books that she has written and read all of those as well.
If you’re a fan of Rachel Cohn, family-themed novels, or wonderful heartwarming contemporaries, this is a book you will definitely want to pick up. I read it really fast because it held my interest – not a boring spot in this book at all!
Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
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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