I don't know what it is about me and these books about women in foreign countries, but I've been reading a LOT of them this year. I read one for an upcoming blog tour about an American woman in France; I read Eat Pray Love (nonfiction), and then this one about an American woman in Japan.
This book turned out to be more of a romance than I originally expected, and yet, it wasn't too romancey. It was also more "real" than some inspirational Christian fiction, in that the heroine is honest about how things strike her (for example, she describes something as "sexy," and yet she is always modest in her dress).
The main conflict, however, is between Allie and her self. Her perceived self, her actual self, and the self she wishes to become. It's a struggle I can completely identify with.
I like Siri Mitchell's fiction a lot, as I've mentioned previously. The tone of this book was sort of like The Cubicle Next Door, which I also enjoyed.
I am sending this book to my friend Monika, who loves Japan. I think she'll like this book too.