My family sometimes makes fun of me for reading coffee table books cover-to-cover as if they were novels. "Nobody reads those things- they're decorative!" Sorry, but sometimes the subject matter or the art just draws me in, as happened with this book. Yokohama is a very special city. For over one hundred years, it was the only port open to foreigners trading with Japan. The cultural interface between Japanese and foreigners was very small, very controlled, but very active. Ultimately, it provided (most of) the motivation for the Meiji Emperor (1868) to emulate the West, and open the nation to more widespread foreign influence. This book is a great introduction to historic Yokohama, and contains beautiful woodblock prints from the 19th century, as well as a few rare photographs from that period.