I really enjoyed Siri’s writing style in this book. The main character, Allie, is a down-to-earth twenty-something. She’s not shockingly beautiful or exquisitely talented. Frankly, it was very refreshing.
This was the first of Siri Mitchell’s books I picked up. After I finished this one, I read three more of her books. Siri has a great way of making the setting of her books become almost another character. In this book for instance, the main character has a hard time relating to Japan. In other countries she has lived in, she felt at home and enjoyed their nuances and traditions. But as much as she tried, she could not understand Japan, and she could not get the feeling of being a part of it. But with a new friendship she struck up with an former “enemy,” she began to see Japan in a new light and started to gain an understanding of how she fit into it and how it could change her.
Moon Over Tokyo is a great read. It’s pretty light reading. Not earth-shattering material. But it has moments that make you think. Throughout the book, there were a few too many descriptions of temples. I could’ve read a couple and been happy. Also, the love interest, Eric, seemed to show up out of nowhere all the time. This seemed a bit forced. Other than those issues, I loved the book.
Mostly, I just soaked in Siri’s writing style. It is conversational, almost lyrical, but at the same time simplistic. Here is the opening paragraph as an example:
“How many of us notice the instant our lives change? The moment we step out of ‘what has been’ and into ‘what is to come’? I didn’t. But looking back, unraveling all that had happened before and everything that happened after, I think I can pinpoint the exact moment. Surprisingly, it had nothing to do with Eric’s coming and nothing to do with Gina’s leaving. It had everything to do with me.”
This is a great read. Allie’s pursuit of love, her struggle to understand Japan, and her new understanding of God is a humorous, imaginative, and learning experience. I’d recommend it highly.
I also enjoyed her other books based in France – Kissing Adrien and Chateau of Echoes – as well as her book based in Colorado Springs – The Cubicle Next Door. My favorite of these was probably Kissing Adrien, which is set in Paris. It’s a really good love story in a great setting! What’s not to love about Paris?
Back cover description of Moon Over Tokyo:
Siri L. Mitchell invites readers to an exotic and mysterious land on a journey of self–discovery.
Though Stars and Stripes reporter Allie O’Connor has lived in Japan for two years, she still feels like a foreigner. As her best friend prepares to move away, she prays for a new friend. Just a friend.
Soon after this prayer she runs into Eric Larsen at church, an old classmate from high school. Eric has recently been assigned to the U.S. embassy and lives in Allie’s district in Tokyo. In school they had been polar opposites. He had been captain of the debate team; she had edited the literary magazine. He drank espresso, while she preferred green tea. He is definitely not the friend she was looking for. And yet…here he is. Here she is.
Will Allie accept this unexpected answer to her prayer? And will she be brave enough to really see the person she once chose to overlook?