Emiko Jean’s New York Times bestselling, Reese YA Book Club pick Tokyo Ever After is the “refreshing, spot-on” (Booklist, starred review) story of an ordinary Japanese American girl who discovers that her father is the Crown Prince of Japan
Izumi Tanaka has never really felt like she fit in—it isn’t easy being Japanese American in her small, mostly white, northern California town. Raised by a single mother, it’s always been Izumi—or Izzy, because “It’s easier this way”—and her mom against the world. But then Izumi discovers a clue to her previously unknown father’s identity…and he’s none other than the Crown Prince of Japan. Which means outspoken, irreverent Izzy is literally a princess.
In a whirlwind, Izumi travels to Japan to meet the father she never knew and discover the country she always dreamed of. But being a princess isn’t all ball gowns and tiaras. There are conniving cousins, a hungry press, a scowling but handsome bodyguard who just might be her soulmate, and thousands of years of tradition and customs to learn practically overnight.
Izumi soon finds herself caught between worlds, and between versions of herself—back home, she was never “American” enough, and in Japan, she must prove she’s “Japanese” enough. Will Izumi crumble under the weight of the crown, or will she live out her fairy tale, happily ever after?
Look for the sequel, Tokyo Dreaming, out now!
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Being a royal turns out to be a lot harder than it looks in this deliciously fun novel. When Japanese American teenager Izumi learns that her absentee father is the Crown Prince of Japan, she also discovers she’s a real-life princess—a job she’s not sure she wants. We fell head over heels for Emiko Jean’s clever modern fairy tale, which captures the challenges of being a teen, or anybody really, who’s light-years outside of their comfort zone. Izzy’s offbeat sense of humor and down-to-earth style are qualities that ultimately serve her well as she navigates the ancient protocols of her new surroundings and responsibilities. Her verbal sparring matches with cute imperial guard Akio made our heart flutter, but our favorite aspect of this story was seeing the richness of Japan’s traditions and culture through Izzy’s eyes. Tokyo Ever After is a perfect fable—the kind about finding your own happy ending.
Puts the Y in YA
If I read this a few years ago, say back in high school, I would've raved about it for MONTHS! But I'm a little older now and with a little more wisdom, and this book just so *perfectly* makes me feel like I'm in high school again. That's how relatable it is! With that being said.. this book isn't my cup of tea for that same reason. Loved it from the description onward, and then got almost a quarter way through it and had to stop because I'm very much not the target audience.
Like I said in the title, really puts the "Y" in Young Adult.
It is a great book for teenagers who are learning about themselves and are growing. The romance is cute, but is not the main focus of the book so if you’re reading it for that you won’t like it much
Asian representation. Finally! We get a look into the heart of a girl that belongs to neither of the worlds she’s from, and we get to watch as she builds her own.