When Japanese-American Izumi Tanaka learned her father was the Crown Prince of Japan, she became a princess overnight. Now, she’s overcome conniving cousins, salacious press, and an imperial scandal to finally find a place she belongs. She has a perfect bodyguard turned boyfriend. Her stinky dog, Tamagotchi, is living with her in Tokyo. Her parents have even rekindled their college romance and are engaged. A royal wedding is on the horizon! Izumi’s life is a Tokyo dream come true.
Her parents’ engagement hits a brick wall. The Imperial Household Council refuses to approve the marriage citing concerns about Izumi and her mother’s lack of pedigree. And on top of it all, her bodyguard turned boyfriend makes a shocking decision about their relationship. At the threat of everything falling apart, Izumi vows to do whatever it takes to help win over the council. Which means upping her newly acquired princess game.
But at what cost? Izumi will do anything to help her parents achieve their happily ever after, but what if playing the perfect princess means sacrificing her own? Will she find a way to forge her own path and follow her heart?
Goodreads Link: Tokyo Dreaming
Tokyo Dreaming is a brilliant and vibrant follow up to Tokyo Ever After – following Izumi as she’s settled further into her role as a princess and has some major decisions to make about her future.
I really enjoyed how much Izumi develops as a character within this novel and it was great to read as Emiko Jean delves far deeper and gives Izumi much more depth and complexity which I felt was missing in the first novel. I also liked how the relationships within the novel flourished – even between characters we wouldn’t expect!
I also enjoyed the exploration of Izumi being torn between duty and following her heart. I feel like this thread was explored well and it makes a lot of sense in the context of the story and why Izumi makes the decisions she does – there’s a whole lot of pressure and expectations on her shoulders. I liked how the characters banded together and come to some sort of solutions for the issues which arose and forged their own paths.
The only part of the novel which fell short for me was the central romance, again this is an issue I had when I read the first instalment in the series – I just didn’t find the romance believable at all. The story definitely suffers with second love interest syndrome – Eriku was so much more charismatic and interesting than Akio.
Overall, I definitely enjoyed Tokyo Dreaming more than it’s first instalment and felt like it puts the characters in a great place for a final instalment – although that’s not confirmed yet so watch this space!
Until next time,