A few weeks ago I went to Bic Camera, the big technology chain store here, in Japan, my local branch of it is in Namba, Osaka. My reason for going was to purchase a Kindle Paperwhite. I had long resisted getting one, preferring not give Amazon too much of money and settling for a Kobo. Why had a resigned myself to getting a Kindle? Because of the book Loco in Yokohama, by Baye McNeil of course.
Loco in Yokohama is Baye McNeil’s second book after Hi! My Name is Loco and I am a Racist. However, I would not want to call this a sequel or even worse, a ‘companion piece’. It is a completely different story about the same character, Baye’s alter-ego, ‘Loco’. Whereas Hi! My Name is Loco and I am a Racist, was about Loco’s journey to and first years in Japan, Loco in Yokohama shows ‘A Day in the life of Loco’, Loco-sensei teaching and Japan, musing at the many eccentricities of working as Language Teacher in Japan. And why not? As a reader who always wanted to know what Jay Gatsby was doing when he wasn’t throwing parties, I was intrigued to be shadowing Loco on his daily toil. We spend time with him and Akiyama-sensei, as well being introduced to new characters such as Mika-chan, Takahashi-sensei and of course, Mrs.Betty . Also encounter once again Loco’s old friend and nemesis, Matsui-kun. And there are ghosts as well, Aiko, lingers in the shadows of some chapters.