25 Books For Terrace House Fans

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Ann Foster

Staff Writer

Ann can often be found walking very slowly through the aisles of bookstores, making sure that nothing new has come out she doesn’t know about yet, and then eagerly telling people about them. She writes about women from history at, and about books, film, TV, and feminism at various other sites. She prefers her books to include at least three excellent plot twists, which is why she usually reads the end first. Twitter: @annfosterwriter

Terrace House, a co-production between Japan’s Fuji TV and Netflix, has quietly become a word of mouth hit in the West. In Terrace House, six young women and men share accommodations while living their everyday lives. Unlike on Big Brother or Survivor, they are not cut off from their friends, families, or jobs and unlike on The Hills or Jersey Shore, the cast are almost uniformly considerate, polite, and hard-working.

Here are some recent books on a Japanese theme that may help enhance your Terrace House viewing experience.

Crafts for Terrace house Fans

Hello Tokyo - 30+ handmade projects and fun ideas for a cute, Tokyo-inspired lifestyle —Bizys, Ebony,Hello Tokyo : 30+ Handmade Projects and Fun Ideas for a Cute, Tokyo-Inspired Lifestyle by Ebony Bizys

Filled with simple craft projects and fun tips inspired by daily life in Tokyo, this book captures the humor and originality of the eclectic Japanese experience. Perfect, pretty projects come together quickly and easily, and they require just a few simple materials to make.


Japanese Knitting: Patterns for Sweaters, Scarves and More: Knits and crochets for experienced needle crafters by MichiyoJapanese Knitting: Patterns for Sweaters, Scarves, and More by michiyo

This is the first Japanese needlework book to be translated into English. The work of renowned Japanese knitting designer michiyo is often showcased on knitting and crochet websites across the globe. In this book, experienced knitters and needleworkers can create a diverse collection of effortless-looking pieces ranging from a pair of soft slippers to a structured jacket.


Lifestyle Inspiration for Terrace House Fans

Awakening Your Ikigai- How the Japanese Wake Up to Joy and Purpose Every Day by Ken MogiAwakening Your Ikigai: How the Japanese Wake Up to Joy and Purpose Every Day by Ken Mogi

Ikigai is a Japanese philosophy which translates as “your reason to get up in the morning.” Ikigai can be a small moment or a deep convictions. Whether big or small, your ikigai is the path to success and happiness in your own life.


The Courage to Be Disliked: The Japanese Phenomenon That Shows You How to Change Your Life and Achieve Real Happiness by Ichiro Kishimi, Fumitake KogaThe Courage to Be Disliked: The Japanese Phenomenon That Shows You How to Change Your Life and Achieve Real Happiness by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga

Like The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up for the mind, The Courage to Be Disliked is the Japanese phenomenon that shows you how to free yourself from the shackles of past experiences and others’ expectations to achieve real happiness.

Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism by Fumio SasakiGoodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism by Fumio Sasaki

The author is not an enlightened minimalism expert; he’s just a regular guy who was stressed at work, insecure, and constantly comparing himself to others—until one day he decided to change his life by reducing his possessions to the bare minimum. The benefits were instantaneous and absolutely remarkable: without all his “stuff,” Sasaki finally felt true freedom, peace of mind, and appreciation for the present moment.

Kintsugi wellness : the Japanese art of nourishing mind, body, and spirit —Kumai, Candice,Kintsugi Wellness: The Japanese Art of Nourishing Mind, Body, and Spirit by Candice Kumai

Candice Kumai’s Japanese heritage has guided her journey back to health at every turn. In this book, she shares what she’s learned and guides us through her favorite Japanese traditions and practices for cultivating inner strength and living a gracious life, interwoven with dozens of recipes for healthy, Japanese-inspired cuisine.

A Little Book of Japanese Contentments: Ikigai, Forest Bathing, Wabi-sabi, and More by Erin Nimi LonghurstA Little Book of Japanese Contentments: Ikigai, Forest Bathing, Wabi-Sabi, and More by Erin Niimi Longhust

With the longest healthy life spans in the world, Japanese people understand the art of living well. This beautiful book distills traditional Japanese philosophies intrinsic to wellbeing, providing easy-to-follow exercises to inspire those who want to live a happier, more balanced life


The Little Book of Ikigai: The secret Japanese way to live a happy and long life by Ken Mogi The Little Book of Ikigai: The Secret Japanese Way to Live a Happy and Long Life by Ken Mogi

How do you find your own ikigai? How does ikigai contribute to happiness? Neuroscientist and bestselling Japanese writer Ken Mogi provides an absorbing insight into this way of life, incorporating scientific research and first-hand experience, and providing a colourful narrative of Japanese culture and history along the way.


The Life-Changing Manga of Tidying Up: A Magical Story by Marie KondōThe Life-Changing Manga of Tidying Up: A Magical Story by Marie Kondō

From the #1 New York Times best-selling author and lifestyle/cleaning guru Marie Kondo, this graphic novelization brings Kondo’s life-changing tidying method to life with the fun, quirky story of a woman who transforms her home, work, and love life using Kondo’s advice and inspiration.


Travel Tips for Terrace House Fans

Cool Tokyo guide : adventures in the city of kawaii fashion, train sushi, and Godzilla —Denson, Abby, author, illustrator.Cool Tokyo Guide: Adventures in the City of Kawaii Fashion, Train Sushi, and Godzilla by Abby Denson

Discover the city of temples, video games, manga, and cosplay with this graphic Tokyo travel guide! Cartoonist Abby Denson, author of Cool Japan Guide, turns her focus to Tokyo’s exciting streets and a little bit beyond with help from her husband Matt, friend Yuuko and sidekick Kitty Sweet Tooth.

Diary of a Tokyo Teen: A Japanese-American Girl Draws Her Way Across the Land of Trendy Fashion, High-Tech Toilets and Maid Cafes by Christine Mari InzerDiary of a Tokyo Teen: A Japanese-American Girl Travels to the Land of Trendy Fashion, High-Tech Toilets and Maid Cafes by Christine Mari Inzer

A book for comic lovers and Japanophiles of all ages, Diary of a Tokyo Teen presents a unique look at modern-day Japan through a young woman’s eyes.


I Heart Japan by SEITOUSHAI Heart Japan Hardcover by SEITOUSHA

The perfect, beautifully illustrated introduction to common Japanese culture for little Japanophiles. Text in English and Japanese identifies common Japanese symbols, from Mt. Fuji to green tea to good fortune cats.

Cookbooks for Terrace House Fans

Cook Japanese at Home- From Dashi to Tonkatsu, 200 Simple Recipes for Every Occasion by Kimiko BarberCook Japanese at Home: From Dashi to Tonkatsu, 200 Everyday Recipes Using Simple Techniques by Kimiko Barber

This book covers everything you need to know about Japanese food, including its long and intriguing culinary history, and gives clear and concise explanations of Japanese ingredients, cooking terms and techniques, – as well as providing more than 200 recipes.

Gyoza: The Ultimate Dumpling Cookbook: 50 Recipes from Tokyo's Gyoza King --Pot Stickers, Dumplings, Spring Rolls and More! by Paradise YamamotoGyoza: The Ultimate Dumpling Cookbook: 50 Recipes from Tokyo’s Gyoza King – Pot Stickers, Dumplings, Spring Rolls and More! by Paradise Yamamoto

Whether found in an exclusive restaurant or Tokyo street stall; these tasty morsels bursting with flavor are hard to resist.


The Just Bento Cookbook: Everyday Lunches to Go by Makiko ItohThe Just Bento Cookbook: Everyday Lunches to Go by Makiko Itoh

Healthy, attractive, and economical–bento-box meals will revolutionize your lunchtimes. Let Makiko Itoh, the Net’s leading bento blogger, get you started on your bento journey!



Let's Cook Japanese Food- Everyday Recipes for Authentic Dishes by Amy KanekoLet’s Cook Japanese Food!: Everyday Recipes for Authentic Dishes by Amy Kaneko

Home-style Japanese cooking is demystified in this refreshing and informative cookbook. Using easy-to-find ingredients, familiar techniques, and authentic flavors, you won’t believe how simple it is to make real Japanese food that is this delicious.


Living Shojin Ryori- Everyday Japanese Vegetarian Food to Nourish, Comfort and Delight by Danny ChuLiving Shojin Ryori: Everyday Japanese Vegetarian Food to Nourish, Comfort and Delight by Danny Chu

Following the success of his previous book, Shojin Ryori: The Art of Japanese Vegetarian Cuisine, chef Danny Chu of Enso Kitchen demonstrates once again the versatility and sophistication of this simple, healthful and vegetarian cuisine.


Simply Bento- Delicious Box Lunch Ideas for Healthy Portions to GoSimply Bento: Delicious Box Lunch Ideas for Healthy Portions to Go by Yuko and Noriko

This book features 140+ healthy and delicious bento recipes that you can make every day of the week, using a combination of traditional and non-traditional ingredients. Learn about different types of bento boxes and accessories, how to assemble your box, and everyday items you will need in your pantry, as well as how to plan ahead so that your morning prep is a breeze.

Art and Design for Terrace house fans

Made in Japan: Awe-Inspiring Japanese Graphics by VictionaryMade in Japan: Awe-Inspiring Japanese Graphics by Victionary

For many, “Made in Japan” is synonymous with quality the perfect marriage of aesthetic appeal and functionality. This book highlights more than 40 creatives from different fields who exemplify this design character through their work in graphic design and branding, illustration, packaging, fashion, product and spatial design.

Japanese Creativity- Contemplations on Japanese Architecture by Yuichiro EdagawaJapanese Creativity: Contemplations on Japanese Architecture by Yuichiro Edagawa

The author, an architect, analyzes a wide variety of exemplary buildings from the sixth century to the present. This is a personal yet comprehensive survey of Japanese creativity and the architectural process, offering an insight into contemporary Japanese culture and identity, both deeply traditional and modern at the same time.

Kimono Now by Manami OkazakiKimono Now by Manami Okazaki

From the refined homes of Tokyo to the nightclubs of Kyoto; from gangster chic to Harajuku street style; from ateliers and catwalks to city sidewalks and religious festivals–this book shows how the kimono has continued to be one of Japan’s most exciting wardrobe elements.



A Detailed Guide to Tokyo's Trendiest Fashion DistrictsTokyo Fashion City: A Detailed Guide to Tokyo’s Trendiest Fashion Districts by Philomena Keet

The fashionable, eccentric pedestrians of Tokyo are captured with hundreds of portrait photographs in this fun guide to Tokyo street fashion. With the inclusion of area maps, and shop and cafe listings, Tokyo Fashion City is an indispensable resource for readers wishing to keep a finger on Tokyo’s style pulse.

WA- The Essence of Japanese Design Book by Rossella Menegazzo and Stefania PiottiWA: The Essence of Japanese Design by Rossella Menegazzo and Stefania Piotti

Explore the enduring beauty of Japanese design through 250 objects, ranging from calligraphy brushes to the iconic Kikkoman soy sauce bottle. The book itself is an object of beauty, printed on craft paper and bound in the traditional Japanese style. This book also features an introduction by MUJI art director Kenya Hara.

Fiction for Terrace House Fans

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata

This novel, available for the first time in English, captures the atmosphere of the familiar convenience store that is so much part of life in Japan. With some laugh-out-loud moments, Murata provides a sharp look at Japanese society and the pressure to conform, as well as penetrating insights into the female mind.


My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life by Rachel CohnMy Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life Hardcover by Rachel Cohn

Ellie Zoellner learns on her sixteenth birthday that her long-lost father is a Japanese hotel mogul who wants her to come and live with him. This is a book about learning what it is to be a family, and finding the inner strength to be yourself, even in the most extreme circumstances.


Eager to read more Japanese translated works? Check out our list of Japanese noir mysteries. And learn more about Japan’s many gorgeous bookstores in our literary tourism post about Japan.