Although I am a fan of the author's sense of humor and writing style, I'm often kind of embarassed about sitting down to read another book about a brooding, sarcastic, over-privilidged, young, white male. Ransom is in line with all of the above, which as I previously admitted, I tend to enjoy (albeit abashedly). But each time I turned a page of Ransom, I felt like I was staring at a bad accident. Americans in Japan walking around wearing top knots, kimono and carrying swords? Come on! The author worked in every silly notion about Japan that Americans love to generalize and exaggerate. Bath houses, martial arts, poisonous blowfish, yakuza tattoos...McInerny threw them all into this one, allowing us not a glimpse of Japan but a cross between a bad James Clavell novel and a comic book. Of couse there were a few of those classic quips that you have to read twice so that you can quote them at "the right" moments. Beyond that, this book represents an adolescent, often insensitive few of Japan that, if it wasn't so laughable, would be completely disappointing.