If you read our blog, you will know that I love Japan, and that our family loves the books from Tuttle Publishing. They’ve just created the coolest book ever with Tokyo Pop-Up Book: A Comic Adventure with Neko the Cat – A Manga Tour of Tokyo’s most Famous Sights – from Asakusa to Mt. Fuji.
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I haven’t seen a pop-up book for ages, and I’ve had my eye on this one so when the friendly folks at Tuttle Publishing surprised us with it, the kids and I stopped everything and sat down immediately to read it! We were honoured to have a sneaky peek at it and we’ve been waiting patiently to share it with you as it’s just been released for sale on May 29th.
This book has 7 spreads, 6 of which have amazing pop-ups. The story begins in the manner of a comic book showing a teenager who has just arrived in Tokyo at 4:30am to visit his aunt. He has his cat, Neko with him for his adventure…little realising what kind of adventure Neko will take him on!
Arriving so early, Chico lies down on a bench for a short rest and falls asleep, only to wake up and find that Neko has disappeared! Chico must now search through the metropolis on his own before arriving at his Aunt and Uncle’s home.
Each full-page spread that follows shows a typical scene from Tokyo…from bright lights, to temples, a sumo match, train station, onsen, and more. One funny pop-up within another depicts Chico’s surprise when attempting to use a high-tech Japanese toilet!
As Chico travels through Tokyo’s pop ups looking for Neko, you can look closely at the illustrations to see if you can spot the cat hiding on each page. How fun!
It really is difficult to show just flat photographs of this book to get the true feel for it so Tristan and Kallista have done a quick video for you:
Sam Ita has done a very good job with the Tokyo Pop-Up Book, indeed, he is a paper engineer to design all the details and have so many pop-up elements on each page that truly shows Tokyo at its finest.
I love this book because it has a fun story, children love looking for Neko, I like the little details about Tokyo, and we all love the pop-ups! It started me reminiscing about Japan and telling Tristan and Kallista about the day I took the train from Hamamatsu to Tokyo to watch Sumo and ended up on the wrong train that was an express and didn’t stop where I needed to be! Another trip in over New Year’s and visiting a temple, and my first visit to an outdoor onsen (that wasn’t in Tokyo, but it was an experience, to be sure)!