Book Review: Alice in Kyoto Forest, Vol. 1 by Mai Mochizuki

Alice in Kyoto Forest, Vol. 1

Author: Mai Mochizuki
Illustrator: Haruki Niwa
Publisher: TOKYOPOP (April 19, 2022)
Paperback, 192 pages
Comics & Graphic Novels, Manga


Orphaned at a young age, Alice has lived with her aunt for most of her childhood. But her uncle is abusive and resentful, and at fifteen years old, Alice decides to return home to Kyoto and train as a maiko, eventually hoping to become a geisha.

But when she arrives back to the city where she was born, she finds that Kyoto has changed quite a bit in the eight years since she left it. Almost as if it’s a completely different world…


Rating: 3 out of 5.

This has the potential to be a really good series, but this first volume has so much setup and exposition that by the time you really start to get into it, it’s over. I really like the concept fo the Kyoto Forest Alice is transported to, and am intrigued to learn more about her relationship with Ren, and how she’ll find her purpose in this new land! As it is, I wish we’d have gotten there just a bit sooner so there could be more actual STORY in this volume. Also major content warnings for abuse, death of a parent.

A digital ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for review. All opinions are unbiased and my own.

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