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Tokyo Heist

3.56  ·  Rating details ·  1,356 ratings  ·  239 reviews
The perfect mystery for fans of Ally Carter's Heist Society

When sixteen-year-old Violet agrees to spend the summer with her father, an up-and-coming artist in Seattle, she has no idea what she's walking into. Her father's newest clients, the Yamada family, are the victims of a high-profile art robbery: van Gogh sketches have been stolen from their home, and, until they can
Paperback, 384 pages
Published June 14th 2013 by Speak (first published June 14th 2012)
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Barry Agreed, but nevertheless this is a fun and interesting book to read! Although it may not be realistic, within the first ten pages I was totally pulled…moreAgreed, but nevertheless this is a fun and interesting book to read! Although it may not be realistic, within the first ten pages I was totally pulled in!(less)

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Average rating 3.56  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,356 ratings  ·  239 reviews

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Hwa Sun
May 28, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: disliked, review, dnf
*Review based on only the first 100 pages.*

Warning: There's a tad bit of ranting in this review, so please go away if you don't want to be offended. That is all. Read on at your own risk.

I am so disappointed by this book. I had pretty high expectations, and it didn't meet any of them.

Here's the thing about me: I love a good mystery. There was a time when mystery was all I would read (I love Case Closed), and Tokyo Heist just didn't cut it for me.

The biggest issue I had was the overall believable
Jul 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
Having taken an Asian Art course in college, and having spent my honeymoon in Tokyo and Kyoto, I was extremely eager to get my hands on TOKYO HEIST. I recently had the opportunity to read an ARC of this terrific YA mystery, and I enjoyed every moment of it, particularly the vivid descriptions of Japan, the clever mystery, and the complex, realistic family dynamics. Without giving away too much of the plot, I'll just say this book involves stolen artwork, a summer trip to Japan, sleuthing teens, ...more
Jul 15, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
What do I feel about this book?

That is a very hard question for me to answer.

Now, normally, I wouldn't think of it being so. The plot is a mystery, Violet gets in over her head and tries to solve the mystery. Hooray!

Only, the problem is...this book has Japanese culture in it.

I will admit, as a huge fan of anime and Japanese culture, parts of this book made me cringe. And I will complain about it because...well, I need to get out my feelings okay!

So first off, Violet comes off as a hardcore weeb.
The perfect mystery for fans of Ally Carter's Heist Society!

All I can to that is....

As someone who loves thieves and heists and everything that that usually entails, this was entirely disappointing.
Not only was the heist un-compelling, our MC, Violet, and sidekick, Reika, jump to conclusions and are entirely obsessed with manga(which MUST be brought up at least 5 times every chapter so the reader does NOT forget).

Their whole story screams unbelievability; two girls with absolutely no previo
From Seattle to Tokyo, Tokyo Heist takes you to beautiful Japan to solve the case of a missing Van Gogh. Art, squid chips, kimonos and a touch of romance are on the menu for this colorful adventure, in this novel by debut author Diana Renn.

A missing painting in Tokyo? If that doesn’t sound like the makings of a fun YA mystery, I don’t know what does! And sure enough, Tokyo Heist took me on a journey that entertained me from beginning to end.

I’ll get the bad out of the way right away and say that
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
Super fun! I only wish it had a few illustrations. Yes, it's YA, so be prepared for plenty of suspension of disbelief, but it was quite enjoyable. ...more
Yusra  ✨
Mar 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
well, I read a YA book in grade 4... that's fine... that's normal
Merry Wu
Tokyo Heist is about Violet, a sixteen year old aspiring artist and daughter of a famous artist. She accompanies her father to Japan and is dragged into a mystery involving a mysterious suicide, a missing van Gogh painting and yukata, Japanese gangsters.
I chose to read this book because it had an attention grabbing cover and title, and the blurb was very intriguing.
A setting that I found interesting was the inn that Violet went to in Arashiyama to follow up on a lead about the missing van Gogh p
Lauren Stoolfire
I studied Asian Art in college, I speak some Japanese, I love Van Gogh, and I enjoy heist stories. I thought Tokyo Heist by Diana Renn was going to be right up my alley, but it mostly didn't work for me. Pretty much all of that goes back to the characters. I just can't believe they'd be able to accomplish anything they do in this novel. ...more
Sophie Riggsby / allthingsequilateral
*review published on Mundie Moms on 7/15/2012*

I love heist plots. They’re my absolute favorite and what I like best about reading them is the anticipation in wondering just how all the pieces of the puzzle will fall. My favorite theme in stories is anything involving families. Diana Renn combines both of those in Tokyo Heist and boy, does she do it well.

What I loved most about Diana’s book is that it’s not told from the traditional heist point-of-view (u
Apr 24, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really hate giving a book one star, but after long deliberations (between one or two stars), I came to the conclusion that one star is an accurate, honest rating. I gave it one star because the plot is scattered everywhere, Violet was suppose to be sixteen but acted like a ten year old, and the pace was too slow from beginning to end. Also, there were too many different supporting character coming and going without a lot of them having any apparent value to the plot. Most of the characters app ...more
Similar Books: Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday, The Liar Society by Lisa & Laura Roecker

I'm not big into mysteries. But there was just something about this blurb that made me want to read this book. Maybe it was the mention of a protagonist who reads manga, or maybe it was the fact that 2/3 of the book takes place in Japan - I don't know, but I had to read this book when I saw the blurb last year. And thankfully, I wasn't disappointed.

This is one of my first ventures into YA mystery territory, and
Everett James
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tokyo Heist was a fun book to read. There were twists and turns and lots of interesting settings that will make you feel like you were there to see it all happen.

Picking up a book is a bit like entering a new relationship. There are questions. There's uncertainty. Will I like this book? What if we're not compatible? What if this book turns out to be a total creep and looks nothing like their obviously photoshopped profile picture? Eeek!
The first thing I look for in a book is writing voice. Is th
Noelle Sizemore
Nov 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought that this book was so unique! I loved the main character and almost all of the others too! I really enjoyed how Violet (the main character) was so determined to solve the mystery, she thought that people would realized her and she wouldn’t be so invisible to everyone. Violet is an artist just like her dad and throughout the whole book she is always drawing/sketching about her own manga story or the mystery that’s going on around her. Violet was constantly worried about what people thou ...more
chaaron ☕️
Jul 28, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, i-own
This book had a really promising plot, but fell really flat for me. Still, it was interesting enough for me to finish, but the plot was scattered everywhere! The characters were pretty one dimensional and Violet, the main character wasn't my favorite. All in all, this book was full of unnecessary cringey moments and dialogue. I don't recommend. ...more
Jun 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
TOKYO HEIST, available today, is Diana Renn's first novel. It's a mystery that takes protagonist Violet Rossi from the streets of Seattle to the ryokan of Kyoto. At first, I was very, very worried that I would hate TOKYO HEIST. The press release claims, "[I]t's the Di Vinci Code for the teen generation with an exotic Asian twist." That description made me cringe. Violet doesn't make the best first impression either. This is going to make me sound so old, but her bad work ethic annoyed me.

But the
Sep 03, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: meh
You would think that a story about a girl recovering stolen art to give to a gang boss in Japan would be really interesting and exciting. In theory, it would be, but the reality is that this story was very dry and rather uninteresting.

The things that I loved about this story was the fact that this wasn't set in the United States and that there were so many characters that weren't white people. I loved getting submersed in Japanese culture and learning about certain customs and art, it was really
Rene Kirkpatrick
Jan 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought Tokyo Heist was great fun- I especially like the whole Seattle connection: Fremont troll, Space Needle, art galleries, comic stores...

When Violet, a manga reading, comic creating artist, goes to stay with her mural painting dad for the summer, she is plunged into an international art theft. Her dad has been commissioned to paint a mural for a Japanese company, the owner of which has had two small Van Gogh's stolen from him.

On the night of her dad's gallery showing, Violet sees two lar
Sep 29, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I reached 34% before I finally had to hang it up. The believability of this book was practically zero for me. I can believe the Yakuza being involved with criminal activities because they are organized crime and all but the main character destroyed what any other believability there might be to the story.

She's a naive teenager with no experience whatsoever in crime beyond her own imagination. No family members who were police, detectives, etc. no friends who work I'm crime solving. She's just a
Hafsah Faizal
Nov 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Originally Posted Here

Sixteen-year-old Violet Rossi is on her way to Japan for her dad's new mural project. A couple of days before they leave, she learns about a set of stolen van Gogh sketches. Once in the mysterious world of Tokyo, where she stands out, Violet and her best friend Reika set out to capture the art thieves and rescue the art. Violet's not doing it for the reward money the Yamada's have promised to anyone who finds their missing painting - she's doing it to get her dad to finall
Pamela Kramer
Jun 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Tokyo Heist" by Diana Renn is a shining success, from the cover of the book, with its title encased in what looks like neon yellow police tape, to the final page with its satisfying and touching conclusion.

The story is about Violet, who is a different kind of 16-year-old. She loves manga, wearing scarves made from kimonos, and anything Japanese.

So when her artist father (with whom she's spending the summer) is offered a job painting a mural in Japan, she is thrilled that she gets to go, too.

Dec 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a really fun, really engaging mystery with a lot of elements I enjoyed. 1.) artist protagonist, so there's fun stuff about the creative process 2.)Japan, so cool, interesting settings that allow for some awesome armchair travel 3.)complicated but important father-daughter relationship.

Don't let the somewhat hardcore-looking cover art fool you: this is a pretty lighthearted and gore-free mystery.

I would now like to address some of the complaints about the novel's lack of realism that I've
Dec 16, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who enjoys a nice adventure where not very much happens

As far as I'm concerned, a unicorn could have appeared in this book and it would have made more sense than the whole plot. I'm surprised by how easily people let two teenagers in on their secrets (even police agents talk about an ongoing investigation).

The storyline is actually interesting, finding a painting that's been hidden for a long time. But there are so many random things in this book that it makes you lose all the interest you had in it (please, if KG was an actual manga, I wouln't rea
Jordan Funke
Feeding my obsession for east Asia, this art heist adventure satisfied me completely. The characters are lovable, the mystery is well executed, with a few contrived moments for the convenience of the plot. I expecially like how the protagonist uses her sketchbook to process what she is observing and learning through drawing it out as a manga. It was a little hard to believe that she knew absolutely no Japanese, since we learn that she is obsessed with Japan. Most kids will make the effort to lea ...more
Jun 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I (for the most part) enjoyed this book, from cover to cover. I am very sad to say, but let me start with the bad. I felt like this book sometimes fell into the situation where the book would rock me too sleep. But there were also a lot of pros. If you believe that this book had and interesting plot, you are correct. Even though this book was placed in modern day time, it still has thrill seeking moments which will keep you on your toes. This is great for people who exists in the world of geek f ...more
Colleen Fauchelle
Dec 27, 2014 rated it liked it
This story is about:

A mystery about missing piece of Art.
A struggling relationship between a Father and Daughter
Having a good friend in your life.
A boy - but not instant love.
A trip to Japan.

I didn't like the main character in this book at the start of the story. However as the story moved on Violet became less annoying.

Favourite verse
"It's different rain from Seattle rain. Quieter,softer,like an unseen hand is scattering uncooked rice.
Aug 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tokyo Heist is a very interesting crime book by Diana Renn. As this is her first novel this book has some cool characters that fit with the book. I love how the way how it was just a regular day but then suddenly something really interesting would happen. The book made me feel engaged in it so I never got bored of it and I enjoyed reading it. I love how the storyline goes which is very interesting. I highly recommend this book to all the people that like crime books.
Aug 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a fun, light read. Don't expect a lot of depth, be ready to suspend your belief a bit (the nerdy 16 year old sure finds herself in amazing situations and with a lot of influence), and you'll enjoy it. I loved that the main character draws manga (I would love to read "Kimono Girl" if it were real!) and is a white girl nerding it out in Japan for the first time. All the art-heist stuff was just fun on the side. ...more
Aug 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awe. Some!!!
Sep 08, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, young-adult
One dimensional characters, improbable events, super simple to solve mystery.
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I write mysteries for readers of all ages, some with international intrigue and some set close to home. My three YA novels featuring globetrotting teens -- TOKYO HEIST, LATITUDE ZERO, and BLUE VOYAGE - are published by Viking/Penguin Random House. FALSE IDOLS is a team-authored FBI thriller set in Cairo's glittering art world, published by Serial Box / Adaptive Books. My forthcoming novel for midd ...more

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