A Year in Japan by Kate T. Williamson

Title:  A Year in Japan
Author:  Kate T. Williamson
Publisher:  Princeton Architectural Press
Published date:  January 2006
Pages:  188
Genre:  Graphic Memoir, Travelogue
Source:  Library


A Year in Japan is exactly what it sounds – Kate Williamson’s memoir of the year she spent in Japan.  Williamson uses both words and pictures (which she drew herself) to give the reader her impressions of this beautiful country.  I would never have heard of this book if it weren’t for Eva‘s recommendation, and I’m so happy she told me about it because I really enjoyed this wonderful little book.

I honestly loved everything about A Year in Japan.  The book was short, but there was a lot of detail in these pages.  It felt like Williamson took all of her memories from her time in Japan, picked out only what really spoke to her about her trip, and put the book together based on that.  I loved that I felt like I was getting a peek inside what mattered most to her about Japan.

I loved the format of the book.  The pictures were wonderfully drawn, with so much detail, and they were really very beautiful.  Also, the font in the book was like handwriting (it could have been Williamson’s handwriting, for all I know), so it felt more like a journal than an actual book.  It made me feel so close to her, like she was literally handing me her journal and saying, “here’s what I liked about my trip.  Enjoy”.  The whole book had the intimate feel of a diary (not in a creepy way, just in a sweet way).

And, lastly, A Year in Japan made me want to hop on a plane and fly to Japan myself.  I don’t have much experience with travelogues, but I can only assume that the author would appreciate the fact that her book made me want to experience what she experienced while living in Japan.  I am so intrigued by this country and its people, and I’d love to travel there someday myself!


23 thoughts on “A Year in Japan by Kate T. Williamson”

  1. You should! I spent a year in Japan myself and it was one of the best experiences of my life. And, this book sounds wonderful! I’m making a note to get myself a copy as soon as I can.

    1. Wow, that is awesome. I would love to go somewhere for a year – now that I have a husband and a job, it’s a little more difficult but hopefully some day!

  2. I just requested this one from my library. I was an exchange student in Japan in 1987 so I hope this will bring back some memories!!! Thanks for showcasing it today!!

    1. Charming is the perfect way to describe it, actually! I should try out something by Bill Bryson, I don’t read a lot of travelogues but I should definitely start. 🙂

  3. You’ve convinced me to look for this one. I don’t have much experience with travelogues either, but I think I’d like this one.

    1. I think it’s a great intro to travelogues because of the quickness of the book, and the combination of illustrations with text makes it very sweet.

  4. This sounds fascinating…I love travel memoirs, and this sounds just different enough to be appealing.

    If you haven’t read Alice Steinbech’s books, I’d recommend them. She has two, Without Reservations, and the follow-up, whose title escapes me. She travels around the world and takes classes or studies things particular to that region. She takes a cooking class in Paris, goes to a conference on Jane Austen in England…things like that. In one of the books, she visits Kyoto.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s