Thursday, March 31, 2005

Author Christian Tschumi to discuss Mirei Shigemori at The Japan Society

The Japan Society of Northern California hosts a ‘Meet the Author’ event with Christian Tschumi on May 16 at 6:00 p.m. at the Mechanics’ Institute (57 Post Street, 4th Floor, San Francisco). Registration begins at 5:30 p.m. and a RSVP is required. Register online at or call 415.986.4383. Admission is $5 for Japan Society members and co-sponsors; $7 for non-members.


Discover the controversial scholar who radically altered the way we look at Zen gardens


By Christian Tschumi, Photographs by Markuz Wernli Saito

March 2005 (Berkeley, CA) ­ Stone Bridge Press, publisher of books about Japan, presents the first book in English about the master who revitalized a Japanese classic tradition.

Mirei Shigemori (1896­ - 1975), a garden maker and scholar, who was trained in painting, flower arranging and the tea ceremony, is increasingly admired for his contemporary designs, the result of his life’s objective to restore the evolution of the Japanese garden.

Believing that the Japanese dry landscape garden (or Zen garden) had fallen into cliché, Shigemori applied modernist shapes, colors, and materials to create stunning avant-garde works that also celebrated the ancient gods and rituals at the heart of Japanese culture.

This book explores ten major Shigemori works­from the checker-board garden of Tofukuji (1939) and the "Hidden Christian" dry landscape at Zuiho-in (1961) to the masterful stone settings at Matsuo Taisha (1975)­using design/cultural analysis, garden plans, and photographs.

Christian Tschumi is a practicing landscape architect with degrees from Switzerland, the United States, and Japan. He wrote his dissertation on Mirei Shigemori and the renewal of the Japanese garden.
Markuz Wernli Saito is a visual artist and photographer based in Kyoto and San Francisco.

Mirei Shigemori: Modernizing the Japanese Garden
By Christian Tschumi, Photographs by Markuz Wernli Saito
April 2005, $18.95, 128 pp., paper, 75+ color photos & illustrations
ISBN 1-880656-94-9, 9781880656945
Gardening & Horticulture / Design

Author Frederik L. Schodt interviewed in Asahi Shimbun

In a recent issue of Asahi Shimbun, author Frederick L. Schodt was interviewed about growing up in Japan and his books (including Dreamland Japan), but mostly about his current book, Native American in the Land of the Shogun.

"Where MacDonald was not entirely successful in building his bridge between East and West," reports The Asahi Shimbun. "Schodt continues to act as an informative and appealing intermediary, whose work deserves the attention of those aiming to gain a better understanding of Japan and its place in the world."

Mobile Suit Gundam: Awakening reviewed at Mecha Anime HQ

MAHQ reviews the first part of the trilogy now available in a single volume called Mobile Suit Gundam: Awakening, Escalation, Confrontation.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

The Japanese Art of Sex author Jina Bacarr on the radio tonight

Jina Bacarr will be interviewed and take calls from listeners tonight at 11:30 PM Easter on News/Talk 101.5 FM with Harrell Carter in Jackson, TN . You can listen to the show online here.

Also, Jina's recent interview on Conscious Sex with Halley Elise has now been archived.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Naikan reviewed in Spirit of Change Magazine

Spirit of Change Magazine - The Review Pages (March/April 2005 Issue)

"Used in Japan at dozens of retreat centers as well as for a variety of uses from mental health counseling to enhancing business practices, Naikan is based on three questions that provide the foundation for examining your life, your actions and your relationships."

Friday, March 18, 2005

Japan Society hosts Manga Mania! featuring SBP authors

This program, entitled Manga Mania! Quick and Easy Tips to Read Manga, will feature renowned author and translator, Wayne Lammers. His recently published work, Japanese the Manga Way: An Illustrated Guide to Grammar & Structure, provides an in-depth alternative Japanese language textbook using various manga excerpts and examples and Mr. Lammers will present quick and easy tips on using manga to learn Japanese. Joining Lammers will be Fred Schodt, author of Manga! Manga! and Dreamland Japan, who will provide background on the explosion of manga’s popularity here in the U.S. Patrick Macias, author of TokyoScope: The Japanese Cult Film Companion and co-author of Cruising the Anime City – An Otaku Guide to Neo-Tokyo, will moderate this one of a kind discussion and Japanese lesson!

This exciting panel discussion on manga and the Japanese language will take place on Tuesday, May 3, 2005 at 6:00 PM at 312 Sutter Street, 2nd Floor, San Francisco, CA. Registration begins at 5:30 PM. RSVP required. You may register online at or call 415.986.4383. Admission is $10 for members; $15 for non-members; and $5 for students with ID.

Co-sponsored by and books sold courtesy of Stone Bridge Press.

Sacred Sanskrit Words reviewed at - Sacred Sanskrit Words Review

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Author Patrick Drazen interviewed in Miami New Times

This article on anime fandom features comments from Anime Explosion! author Patrick Drazen: Cartoon Swoon 2005-03-17

SBP authors are less 'Wrong About Japan'

Prize-winning author is 'Wrong About Japan'

This review of Peter Carey's latest book was far from positive, but the best part is at the end, when the reviewer names authors Frederik L. Schodt and Fred Patten as better writers on Japanese pop-culture!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

The Midnight Eye Guide reviewed in Neo Magazine

Neo Magazine, Issue 004

"...The Midnight Eye Guide still contains much that will enhance your viewing experience, with snippets of unexpected trivia like Masato Harada’s early job dubbing The Empire Strikes Back. It’s informative and well worth the cover price..."

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Author Jina Bacarr on the radio this week

Jina Bacarr, author of The Japanese Art of Sex, will be on two radio shows this week, both available online.

Thursday, March 17th at 3 pm Eastern Time: Sex Conscious with Halley Elise
This show will later be archived.

Friday March 18th at 6:30 pm Eastern Time: Bonnie Graham's Long Island's Dating. This show can also be heard at WGBB's Long Island's Talking link.

Monday, March 14, 2005

The Anime Companion 2 reviewed in Anime Insider

“Most anime are created specifically for Japanese audiences ... Luckily, The Anime Companion 2 sets you straight on the ins and outs of Japanese culture and history with over 500 new references.” -- Anime Insider, April/May 2005

Cruising the Anime City reviewed in Library Bookwatch

"A 'must-have' for the collector who needs to know 'the' hottest shopping spots in Tokyo!" -- Library Bookwatch, March 2005

Being Japanese American reviewed in VOYA

Being Japanese American: A JA Sourcebook for Nikkei, Hapa ... & Their Friends

“Teens who want to know a little more about contemporary Japanese American culture beyond all the history books about the World War II internment experience will find great information here…” -- Voice of Youth Advocates, April 2005 Issue

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Author Gilles Poitras introduces Cutie Honey at SF film festival

This weekend the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, CA (Saturday, March 12 at 9:45 PM) and the Castro Theatre in San Francisco (Sunday, March 13 at 9:15 PM) will both have an evening showing of Hiroaki Anno's latest film, the live action adaptation of Go Nagai's famous Cutie Honey as part of the S.F. International Asian American Film Festival 2005.

Gilles Poitras, author of Anime Essentials, The Anime Companion, and the upcoming The Anime Companion 2 (pictured), will be introducing the film at the Sunday night showing in San Francisco.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Japan Journals reviewed in Midnight Eye

"Richie's catalogue of this constantly dynamic and changing metropolis is essentially a story with three intertwining narratives: of how Tokyo has intrinsically changed, how it has changed in the eyes of the world, and how the writer has changed within it. At almost 500 pages in length, as a personalised account of one city's miraculous rise from post-war ruin through the Bubble years of excess to its recession years at the end of the millennium, it is perhaps the most fitting testimonial one could ever wish for."

Midnight Eye book review: The Japan Journals 1947-2004 (Donald Richie)

Midnight Eye also discusses Richie's experimental films, recently released on DVD:
A Donald Richie Film Anthology

Cruising the Anime City review in Film Fanaddict Magazine

Film Fanaddict Magazine

Monday, March 07, 2005

Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp interviewed in Missing Image

Beyond the hype missing image

Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp, authors of The Midnight Eye Guide to New Japanese Film, were recently interviewed by this German blog (in English). A 2-page article based on this interview will be in Spex Magazine in late March.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Author Jina Bacarr to guest on Love and Romance with Sue this Saturday

Jina Bacarr, author of The Japanese Art of Sex, will talk love, romance, geisha, and more on Sue McGarvie's radio show this Saturday night, March 5 at Midnight Eastern/9 pm Pacific. Catch it on the radio in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver, or find out how to listen online.

Watching Anime, Reading Manga in Collector's Corner

Boyce McClain's Collector's Corner, February 2005, Issue #147: "So you think you know everything there is to know about anime and manga, huh? Sorry bucko but your knowledge pales in comparison to author Fred Patten who over the past 25 years has written several volumes worth of articles and reviews about anime and manga. Stone Bridge Press has compiled the lion share of his work in an oversized paperback collection that gathers together his observations on anime, Japanese society, manga, fandom, artists and more (oh boy, a lot more!). Here's just a sampling of what you can expect in Watching Anime, Reading Manga: 25 Years of Essays and Reviews: articles on fanzines, the first ads seen in America, the inside on conventions, mainstream films influenced by anime, reviews of soundtracks, videos, artists bios, extensive reviews on some famous manga and anime titles. His clever insights and thoroughly researched articles make reading Watching Anime, Reading Manga: 25 Years of Essays and Reviews insightful, educational and best of all, fun."

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Midnight Eye reviewed in Newtype USA

Newtype USA reviewed The Midnight Eye Guide to New Japanese Film in its February 2005 issue:

"This is easily one of the most important books on Japanese cinema ever released in English. Asian film aficionados Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp (co-editors of the authoritative website bring us 97 reviews of Japanese films accompanied by 20 in-depth profiles of filmmakers including Kinji Fukasaku (Battle Royale), Seijun Suzuki (Branded to Kill) and Sogo Ishii (Gojoe). Chronicling the rise of today's crop of wildly talented indie filmmakers after the fall of the Japanese studio system, Mes and Sharp write with passion, insight and a collective critical voice that's neither cumbersome nor too casual. Of note to anime fans are featured write-ups on the films of Hayao Miyazaki and Katsuhiro Otomo, making this a book that every fan of Japanese cinema should own." -- Justin Kovalsky