Reviews for Finding Japan


"A fascinating, comprehensive overview of the emergence of Western culture in Japan."

BC Books for BC Schools


"The book is an intriguing, informative and well-illustrated overview of a cast of individual characters—rogues and heroes, scholars and dipl;omats, missionaries, naval officers, adventurers, educators, politicans, traders and business tycoons-drawn by the exotic world of Japan over a century of contact."

—Hugh Stevens, bout de papier


"In this broadly researched and well-illustrated book, [Anne Shannon] rescues from obscurity a number of people with Canadian connections who played a part in laying the groundwork for trade and diplomatic relations between Canada and Japan–goals that weren't achieved without missteps by us and misfortunes for them."

—George Fetherling, Diplomat and International Canada


" . . . written with wit, personal flare, and acute observation of human behaviour, Finding Japan engages an educated general public as well as students and scholars interested in the intersection of the modern histories of Japan and Canada. Further, a remarkable collection of photos and images enhances the delight of reading. Ultimately, the book offers a new and pleasant way to assess the historical roots of Canada’s links and connections to Japan and the Pacific World."

—Yukari Takai, BC Studies

  Click here for more


“MacDonald’s experience is unique, but he is not the only Canadian to have left a mark in Japan in those early days. Many others did and it is their lives that Shannon chronicles in Finding Japan, a well-illustrated and fascinating new history of Canada’s relations with its closest Pacific neighbour. . . . A fascinating aspect of Shannon’s book is how she revisits the life and career of well-known Canadian figures to show their connections with Japan.”

—Martin Laflamme, Vancouver Sun  Click here for more


“Shannon's stories range across centuries and the inclinations of the subjects: from exploration and teaching to commerce, diplomacy, politics, religion and beyond. . . . Others who love offbeat tales of historical connections will be delighted she followed her curious mind to the penning of this wonderful book."

—Moira Dann, Times Colonist  Click here for more