Lifestyle/Entertainment Editor, Asia, Tokyo
Elaine's Feed
Aug 13, 2013

World Chefs: Silk Road journey of noodles, dumplings and family

TOKYO, Aug 13 (Reuters) – Jen Lin-Liu, a U.S.-born resident
of China, was taking a pasta-making course in Rome when she
began wondering whether the tale of Marco Polo bringing noodles
to Italy from China was actually true.

Her curiosity led her along the Silk Road, the ancient trade
route linking Asia and Europe, eating the different kinds of
pasta she found and speaking candidly with women as they cooked
together in kitchens along the way.

Aug 13, 2013

Japan PM Abe considers cut to corporate tax – Nikkei

TOKYO, Aug 13 (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
is considering a corporate tax cut as a way to offset the
potential economic drag of a planned two-stage hike in the sales
tax, the Nikkei economic daily reported on Tuesday, citing
government sources.

Abe has called for a study on lowering corporate tax, which
at 38.01 percent is one of the highest in the industrial world,
as a way of easing the burden on Japanese companies and
attracting foreign investment, the Nikkei reported.

Aug 6, 2013

Anime master Miyazaki’s new film sounds a warning for Japan

TOKYO (Reuters) – Hayao Miyazaki’s new film is already a box office hit but its themes about the dangers of nationalism and war have set up the Oscar-winning animator for unprecedented criticism.

“The Wind Rises”, which debuted at the top of the Japanese box office last month and has a competition slot at the upcoming Venice Film Festival, is based on the man who designed Japan’s feared Zero fighter plane used in World War Two.

Jul 21, 2013

“Cool Japan” gives anime heroes a new mission: boost the economy

TOKYO, July 21 (Reuters) – The critters, warriors and
doe-eyed women of Japanese animation and manga comics have long
found fans around the world. But now the Japanese government
wants to mobilise them for a far sterner task: boosting the
economy.

Enter the “Cool Japan” fund, a $500 million investment of
public money aimed at helping Japanese firms promote their
cultural wares abroad – an echo of South Korea’s investment in
soft power that has lifted its K-pop music industry and rapper
Psy to global fame.

Jul 17, 2013

Book Talk: Danielle Steel heads inside the fashion world

TOKYO, July 18 (Reuters) – The fashion world is the setting
for the latest book by bestselling novelist Danielle Steel, a
prolific author who continues to produce several books a year.

“First Sight”, which appeared in mid-July, is the story of
Timmie O’Neill who has created a ready-to-wear fashion empire
after a difficult childhood and a past she wants to forget.

Jul 11, 2013

Book Talk: Chris Bohjalian on history, anxiety and writing

TOKYO (Reuters) – Bestselling novelist Chris Bohjalian had long been searching for a way to write a book set in Tuscany during World War Two, but it wasn’t until his daughter performed in “Romeo and Juliet” that all the pieces came together.

The result was “The Light in the Ruins”, a tale centering on the doomed love between an Italian woman from a noble family and the German soldier she comes to know during the period in 1944 when Tuscany, as Bohjalian puts it, “became an innermost ring of Dante’s Inferno.”

Jun 21, 2013
via FaithWorld

Book Talk: The dark doubts in the heart of a Mormon missionary

Photo

(Mormon missionaries or elders Owens, Valente and Velez (L-R) cross a railroad as they mission in San Fernando, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, February 17, 2009. REUTERS/Marcos Brindicci )

They’re a familiar sight around the world, whether in northern Japan or southern Argentina: a pair of men in dark suits, with nameplates, often riding bicycles as they go about their job preaching the Mormon religion.

Jun 13, 2013

English history with a twist in ‘The Boleyn King’

TOKYO (Reuters) – What would have happened if Anne Boleyn, the wife of Henry VIII and mother of Elizabeth I, had given her husband the son he so desperately wanted instead of miscarrying and eventually losing her head as a traitor?

This is the premise behind “The Boleyn King” by Laura Anderson, the first book of a trilogy set to take a look at the reign of Henry IX, known as William, in a Tudor court where Henry VIII had only two wives rather than six.

Jun 13, 2013

Book Talk: English history with a twist in ‘The Boleyn King’

TOKYO, June 13 (Reuters) – What would have happened if Anne
Boleyn, the wife of Henry VIII and mother of Elizabeth I, had
given her husband the son he so desperately wanted instead of
miscarrying and eventually losing her head as a traitor?

This is the premise behind “The Boleyn King” by Laura
Anderson, the first book of a trilogy set to take a look at the
reign of Henry IX, known as William, in a Tudor court where
Henry VIII had only two wives rather than six.

Jun 6, 2013

Book Talk: The tale of a time-travelling serial killer

TOKYO, June 6 (Reuters) – When Harper meets Kirby, he is a
grown man and she is a child. He gives her a toy pony, tells her
he’ll be back, then vanishes – into Chicago in the 1930s and a
mysterious house that opens onto other times. Later, he tries to
kill her.

“The Shining Girls”, by South African Lauren Beukes, traces
Harper’s compulsion to murder the women he knows as “The Shining
Girls” and Kirby’s stubborn fight to unravel the mystery behind
him and bring him down.