Diary of a Tokyo Teen by Christine Mari Inzer

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“The summer before she turned sixteen, Christine Inzer traveled solo to Tokyo to get reacquainted with her birthplace. Through charming drawings, photos and musings, Christine takes us on a journey through modern Japan. She explores the fashion hub of Harajuku, chases down geisha in Kyoto and eats the best sushi of her life in Tsukiji. And she meets lots of interesting characters along the way.”

-Synopsis from the book


I can’t remember where I first heard about Diary of a Tokyo Teen: A Japanese-American Girl Travels to the Land of Trendy Fashion, High-Tech Toilets and Maid Cafes by Christine Mari Inzer, but I am so glad that I found this book!

Christine spent eight weeks in Japan with her extended family and the book chronicles her time in Japan.

“Japan is a fascinating mix of the old and the new: Ancient temples and modern skyscrapers, geisha and maid cafes, Enka and J-Pop, sushi and Mos Burger. I experienced all of these things in Japan, and I learned a lot about myself along the way. It was an incredible journey, and with this book I hope to share it with you.”

-Christine Inzer from Diary of a Tokyo Teen

This was such a fun read. It’s short enough that it can be read in one sitting, but meaningful enough that I was still thinking about it days later. As someone who as always wanted to visit Japan, I have to say I was really engrossed in this book and I loved being able to see Japan through the eyes of someone who has never been there before either (although Christine visited Japan when she was ten years old, she says that seeing it again five years later was a whole new experience for her). The drawings were so charming but also very astute – keep in mind that Christine Inzer published this book when she was just seventeen! I loved her depictions of geishas, Harajuku, and the fact that personal photos from the trip were also included.

If you enjoy travel memoirs and/or graphic novels I would definitely recommend adding this one to your TBR list!

Have you read any good graphic novels or travel memoir books lately? Tell me about them in the comments!

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