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Emily Itami Books In Order

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Emily Itami is a literary fiction novelist who is best known for her debut novel “Fault Lines,” which she published in 2021.

She began writing when she was very young and remembers that she used to be a nerdy kid who walked around with her diary anywhere she went.

In her teenage years, she used to keep terrible diaries that she believes ought to never to see the light of day.

She was lucky that Henrietta Barnett School, which she attended used to have a Drama Festival. At the festival, the students would pen short stories, plays, and any literary creative work they could think of.

During her schooling years, she used to write all manner of plays and short stories and by the time she was ten years old, storytelling was in her blood. However, she believes the biggest influence on her writing was her experiences living in Japan.
When she came back to London after living in Tokyo for many years, she began to see things from an interesting and very different perspective that she felt she needed to write about.

Itami draws a lot from her experiences living in Japan as a child and later on as an adult in the writing of her novels.

As a child when she first returned to England after living in Tokyo for several years, she used to use that experience in her creative writing assignments.
She used to miss Japan so much and tried as much as possible to recall in detail many of her surroundings.

Growing up in England, she used to find depictions of Japan to be wanting and most of the time untrue.

Much of what she found focused on the traditional and old aspects such as temples on snow-capped mountains. Other times they were about the wonderful and weird such as the maid cafes and vending machines.
Emily Itami could not find the quiet and peaceful neighborhood where she had grown up, and the inimitable sense of community all around.

As an adult, she went back to live in Tokyo where she had a chance to relive a lot of her childhood but this time with her husband and children.

She also had the opportunity to view the other side of Tokyo. She was interested in including the culture and customs, the restaurants, the buzz, the architecture, and the nightlife that she never noticed when she was a kid.
Upon returning to London, she found it a lot of fun to write about the many places she always wished she could go back to.

Emily Itami moved to Japan with her children while they were still very young. While she had once lived in Japan as a child, living there as an adult and especially as a mother was a very different experience.
Some of the things that she found very different from her experiences living in London were the expectations of the behavior of mothers and the treatment of women.

As a new mother, she soon found herself taking in the crazy world and particularly the expectations of perfection placed on Japanese women and mothers.

It was insane how mothers were expected to adhere to very high standards which she somehow found to be very interesting.

Moreover, Japanese women particularly in Tokyo where she lived with her family tended to be quite reserved like most in that part of the country.

Over the years, that she spent living in Tokyo, she began making friends and discovered that while the Japanese are initially reserved, it is usually all appearance.

When she moved back to the UK, Emily Itami began writing her manuscript.

She never had an exact process for her writing as she usually took advantage of the days she did not go in to work and when the kids were at school to write uninterrupted for several hours.
She started submitting it to agents in 2019 and by 2020 just before the COVID-19 lockdowns, she met Kirsty her agent.

Despite the lockdowns, they began submitting the manuscript to publishers and were surprised when the likes of Custom House and Phoenix Books began showing interest.

She published the novel in 2021 and has since then published at least two other titles that have been just as good.

Emily Itami’s novel “Fault Lines” combines Sally Rooney’s incisive intimacy with Helen Fielding’s sharp wit.

It is an astonishingly relatable and compulsively readable novel about self, marriage, love, and motherhood and the surprising, vibrant city of Tokyo.

The lead is a Japanese housewife named Mizuki who is the mother to two adorable kids, wife to a hardworking husband, and lives in a very beautiful apartment in Tokyo.
She has the life every woman could want but she sometimes thinks of throwing herself off the balcony of her high-rise apartment.

Sometimes she cannot stand the thought of spending another evening hanging up laundry and not talking to her husband.

But one night she meets a successful restaurateur named Kiyoshi and in the man she rediscovers friendship, freedom, and the electric neon pulse of the Tokyo she has always loved.
The deeper she gets into the relationship, the clearer it becomes that she needs to choose just one life rather than the two she is living.

Startingly honest, provocative, and funny, Fault Lines is work that is great for any woman who asks how did I get here. It is a piercing portrait and bittersweet love story about female identity filled with astounding wit and resonance.

“Kakigori Summer” by Emily Itami is a work that tells the story of Ai, Kiki, and Rei who are three sisters divided by circumstance and distance. All of them have lost their parents in unique ways but are determined to carry on.
Rei lives in London halfway across the world from where she was brought up, where she is employed by a financial corporation.

Kiki is a single mother who lives in Tokyo where she works in a care home to take care of her young son.

The youngest of the women is a Japanese music idol known as Ai. Ai suddenly finds herself thrust into the spotlight when she is embroiled in a scandal.

Rei finds herself having to pick up pieces of her family. The two reunite back home in Japan at their childhood home where they have to deal with the aftereffects of their mother’s suicide.
It is a redemptive and transporting novel about loss and love.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Emily Itami

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