Friday, October 26, 2012
Book Review: Tokyo Heist
AUTHOR: Diana Renn
PREMISE: Violet's father becomes involved in a stolen art case and she decides to take matters into her own hands.
MY REVIEW: Here's the thing, I WANTED to love this. I really did. I'm a otaku so I'm all over anything Japan. In terms of accuracy of culture and writing, I give this book a huge thumbs up. Author did her research. The way she wrote about Tokyo was lovely and she really made the city come alive. I loved all of that. It was also even a good mystery if a bit predictable.
Two things hindered this book however and kept me from loving it: The main character was such a Mary Sue and the implausibility of it all. I really should love Violet, I mean she's a manga fan and a artist! She was practically me in high school! However she was what I call the "I'm so perfect I'm annoying" Mary Sue. Literally Violet could do no wrong in this book. Even when she screwed up, it led to a reveal and eventual praise from everyone. Perfect characters are annoying especially ones like Violet who actually feel quite bratty. Oh and don't get me started on her whole "I'm not an otaku though" bs. Honey, you read manga, you draw, you paint manga characters on stuff. Last I checked, stuff like that made one an otaku.
On top of Violet's annoyiance a lot of stuff here was just plain implausible. I'm sorry but in what reality would a japanese couple who has known you for like half an hour offer you a free trip to Japan? And a job on top of that. Also I don't think FBI agents would be terribly pleased at a teenager telling them how to do their jobs when she's taking advice from manga for crying out loud. I know in mysteries you have to have some suspension of disbelief but come on, I've read Nancy Drew books that make more sense then this. The Nancy Drew computer games make more sense then this (if you haven't played any of those you totally should, they're so much fun).
Stuff like that kept this book from being totally awesome. It was a okay first effort but I was ultimately underwhelmed. If the author continues she needs to work on believability and making her characters likeable. Her writing style is very nice though.
WHO SHOULD READ: Nancy Drew fans, mystery fans
MY RATING: Three out of Five kimonos