Restaurant Homages to Books

A few weeks ago, I came across a particularly interesting photo from someone I follow on Instagram. Taken in New York, it was the outside of a little bistro called Little Prince. In the foreground of the photo was the indicator of where the bistro may have possibly gotten its name; the famed Antoine de Saint-Exupery novella, The Little Prince. While there’s no indication about its inspiration based on what I was able to discover online about this little eatery (other than the fact that they serve altered French cuisine there), it definitely makes for interesting discussion if the inspiration for the place was, in fact, the beloved French story.

Learning of the existence of this bistro, it makes me think of other instances where eateries are created around a particular theme or subject matter. This definitely goes hand in hand for cafes nowadays, what with the rise of cat and dog cafes and, if you’re fortunately in close traveling distance of one, a cafe clearly designed to be kawaii-esque. But whenever I see such a place whose theme was inspired by a narrative, I find that to be an experience worth going for. I always find it fascinating whenever I hear of something that was inspired by a story.

I previously wrote about cafes, and how apart from the coffice movement that’s present in today’s time, they’ve always been go-to’s for writers for the longest period of time. But what’s interesting about cafes and other eateries that go out of their way to capture the spirit of a story is that it’s practically a full circle in succession; where the very environment a writer may more or less spend time working on their craft suddenly is turned upside down by the effect of a story. It’s instances like that that truly fascinate me.

Two years ago, when I first got into the works of Haruki Murakami, it was within that time span where I learned of a cafe that very much is like a sliver of his crazily intriguing stories slipped out into real life. In Tokyo, there is a book cafe for Murakami fans to come together called Rokujigen (Sixth Dimension in Japanese). It’s in an old building that once was a jazz club, very much like that one he used to run prior to going into writing, and it’s tucked away in a location prior to reaching the second floor of the building. It’s become a cozy go-to for both Murakami fans and tourists alike, as discussions are engaged on the phenomenal works of this peculiar author.

Learning about these locations, it has left me wondering: What would such a space look like if it was created around my own novel, A Moment’s Worth? I don’t expect that happening anytime soon, if at all even, but it’s one of those things where it’s fun to think about. I can imagine paper cranes hanging from the ceiling by red threads, with the occasional crane on every other table. It would likely be a cozy atmosphere with bonsai trees, paper houses, and sea shells decorated along shelves on the walls. Photographs of the various locations the book takes place in – from San Francisco to Singapore – would hang from the wall, as well as photographs of the night sky. Items like kimchi fried rice and boba milk tea would be on the menu. The soothing music of David Choi would likely play overhead. Reading and writing creatively would be highly encouraged.

These spaces exist in this world, and it seems that overtime, more appear to be turning out. To see a place like a cafe or a little bistro hone influence from a book, even if its only similarity is within the title, makes for nice little escapes where reality and fiction come together harmoniously.

A Moment’s Worth is now available through the following venues: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, iTunes. Please leave a review if you can, for my goal is to get a total of at least 20 reviews on all venues (so far, I’ve gotten 12 reviews so I’m already just past the halfway point to my goal). Check out its Goodreads page, which includes two trivia quizzes for all who’ve completed reading it already.

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