Idolmaker (Only in Tokyo #3) by Jonelle Patrick
In the wake of a deadly disaster, has a killer seized a perfect opportunity to commit the perfect crime?
An earthquake strikes Tokyo, and when the dust settles, it’s discovered that the reason the Tabata Shrine’s head priest was late to perform a wedding is because he was dead. Detective Kenji Nakamura is assigned to investigate, but although all clues point to one of Japan’s most idolized pop stars as the prime suspect, he knows that’s impossible––the idol and her band were swept away in the tsunami following the quake.
Meanwhile, part-time English translator Yumi Hata discovers a shocking truth about the dead idol. As mourning fans whip themselves into a media frenzy, can she and Kenji track down the killer who’s desperate to protect the secret that will rock the Japanese entertainment industry more powerfully than any earthquake?
Lisa's Review - 5 out of 5 stars
After previously reading book number 2 in the Only in Tokyo series, Fallen Angel, I was thrilled when Jonelle contacted me asking if I would like to read Idolmaker, and I was even more thrilled when I started reading and found that Detective Nakamura and Yumi Hata were both back, as I love these characters!
Fallen Angel was such a brilliant mystery with incredible twists and turns to the plot, I desperately hoped Idolmaker would be the same, and I was not left disappointed! With an intricately weaved web of suspects and fantastic characters, yet again Jonelle got me with a mystery I just couldn't work out for myself and the ending left me amazed at how cleverly she had worked her plot.
As someone with very little knowledge of pretty much anything Japanese related, and I admitted in my last review I struggled with a few things, I found myself easily picking up some of the 'un-known to me' parts of the story thanks to the incredible way Jonelle explains things in an easy to understand way, and by the end of the book the terminology and such were easy for me to understand what I was reading.
Idolmaker focuses on the pop star life in Japan, and I again, had my eyes opened and it was fascinating to read, with some larger than life characters that I loved, but also we learn a bit about the happenings that occur when an earthquake, followed by a tsunami, hit. Its common knowledge that these natural disasters occur too regularly in Japan so again my eyes were opened and the injection of reality in the book was brilliant.
I don't want to give anything away about the ending, but I have been rooting for this since Fallen Angel, so I was super happy with what happened as the book progressed and by the end. I also loved the way Idolmaker was left wide open for the next book in the saga and I cannot wait.
I read these books in e-book form, and I don't often buy real books now, but the stunning covers of these books and how amazing I am finding these stories, I will be buying myself these books to have pride of place on my bookshelf!
Interview with Jonelle Patrick
I am thrilled to have Jonelle answer some of our 'getting to know you' questions, and thank you for taking the time, Jonelle! I hope our followers enjoy her answers!
1. What was the first book you remember reading as a child/teen/adult?
The first "chapter book" I remember reading as a child was Lloyd Alexander's "The Black Cauldron." It was such a revelation that I could instantly be whisked to a world that was far more interesting than the one filled with spelling tests and Barbies, that great swaths of my childhood thereafter were spent battling evil in Prydian, Narnia, and Middle Earth.
2. What do you listen to whilst writing?
At the cafe where I do my writing in Tokyo, I used to listen to the hum of Japanese conversations I couldn't understand. But then my Japanese unfortunately got good enough that the shortcomings of the lady next to me's husband were too distracting, so now I bring my headphones and listen to the murderously moody piano music of Helen Jane Long.
3. Do you think your writing style is affected by the type of music/background noise you listen to?
Actually, while I'm on a writing tear, I'm totally oblivious to what's going on around me. But when I really want to capture what it's like to be in a certain place, sometimes I take my laptop to the kind of shrine or cafe I'm writing about. Sitting there writing, I often discover great details that I wouldn't have included if I were just sitting in my usual place. Crows cawing in the trees overhead. The smell of tea roasting in the shop next door. The sound of a little boy running up to the shrine steps to ring the bell and pray for success on his math test.
4. If you could master any other art form what would it be?
The art of conversation. Life would be so much more fun if I could be Oscar Wilde.
5. Do you have any superstitions when writing?
No, but...maybe I need some!
6. Do you read all your reviews? How do you react to a negative review?
I read all my reviews, and although the ones with negative comments make me feel like I'm getting a minor stabbing, I read those especially carefully. I'm really grateful when people who didn't enjoy one of my books take the time to tell me why, so I can figure out how to fix it in the next one. My job is to deliver enjoyment and a little escape from daily life, so if I'm not making people say, "Damn! You made me miss my bus stop!" I'm not doing my job.
7. What snacks/drinks do you keep on hand when writing?
Darjeeling with milk and two sugars. In fact, I'm drinking a cup right now!
8. What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Write every day. Listen to criticism. Never give up. Never give up. Never give up.
9. Have you always wanted to be an author?
Always. I laboriously stapled together my first book between cardboard covers in fourth grade (space traveling princesses featured hugely, I seem to recall) and the world's kindest school librarian pasted a check-out pocket in the front and put it in the school library. My true friends checked it out. You others...you know who you are.
If you have enough time I would love for you to answer some of our random questions.
1. What book are you currently reading?
Kate Atkinson, "Case Histories." She is SO brilliant at writing characters, just kill me now.
2. Where did you last go on holiday?
Israel & Jordan
3. If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think it would be called?
"She Loved Japan, Even The Infuriating Bits"
4. What’s in your fridge right now?
Boxes and boxes of chocolate mochi. DON'T JUDGE. (Chocolate mochi = Japanese sticky pounded rice cakes with nuggets of chocolate in the middle. I found out the hard way that they only sell them in certain seasons, then they go away for MONTHS so I stock up. I feel sure that the convenience store guys refer to me as Crazy Mochi Foreigner.)
Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Idolmaker-Tokyo-Mystery-InterMix-ebook/dp/B0090UOHRI/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1380537737&sr=1-1&keywords=idolmaker