13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars
I really wanted to like it but . . ., 31 July 2013
When I first saw 'Tokyo On Foot' I was enthralled by the quirky illustrations done in coloured pencils. I've travelled to Japan many times & love all aspects of Japanese culture. The illustrations are on the most part interesting, but it was all the comments surrounding them (supposedly by the author, but set in a wOnKy FoNt) that annoyed me.
The author is supposed to be French, and yet the book is entirely in ultra-American English. Aspects of the city and its people are constantly being compared to how things are 'back home'(America?).The book is full of words like 'Moms','City Hall','bucks',etc. His hand-drawn maps always seem to highlight the location of Western Fast-food outlets - as no Japanese food is featured in the drawings.
The author gives the impression of never really understanding (or wanting to understand) the new world around him - despite having the gift of spending six months in Japan. The 'Imperial Palace' is mockingly called 'Emperor Land' on his map of Tokyo. 'Funny-looking' & 'weird' are favourite terms he uses to describe what he sees.
He seems to be complaining all throughout - like how 'far' Machiya is from the centre of Tokyo,compared to Takadanobaba - (Machiya is actually closer). I tired of his whining about being detained by the police - all because he couldn't care less about how to behave in Japan.
This is not a guide book, just a collection of illustrations depicting a self-limited experience of Tokyo.
If the book was reprinted without all the text, It would be better.