[BOOK REVIEW] Before the Coffee Gets Cold Book by Toshikazu Kawaguchi Brings You Back in Time

What would happen if you had the possibility to travel back in time? Who do you want to meet and why? It’s so much fun having fantasies about going back in time, especially if we get to meet people we’ve always wanted to meet. It may be impossible in real life, but the book Before the Coffee Gets Cold can travel us to another time. Toshikazu Kawaguhi’s stories in this book succeed in bringing my imagination on an adventure.

As stated on the back cover, this book is about a brewed coffee café in a small back alley in Tokyo that offers its customers a unique experience: the opportunity to travel back in time. Funiculi Funicula is the name of the café. Of course, there are some rules for customers who want to go back in time: they must sit in particular seat, they are not allowed to leave the café, and they must return to the present before the coffee gets cold. In this book, we will meet four visitors, each of whom is hoping to make use of the café’s time travelling offer, in order to confront the lover who left them, receive a letter from their husband whose memory has begun to fade, see their sister one last time, and meet the daughter they never got the chance to know. Everyone who wishes to travel back in time must first visit the café.


The cover piques my interest the first time I pick up this book. The cover color is lovely, and I like it. I’m getting more excited to read this book after reading the reviews. Actually, I was looking for some books about travel time at the time, so I decided to buy it. The page isn’t too long; you can read it in one sitting. In any case, there is an Indonesian version as well, titled Funiculi Funicula. I adore them both. I also like the cover of Indonesian version, which depicts Japanese. But, to be honest, I prefer the English version cover, though both are excellent.

Book Cover in Indonesia (Photo : tantridp)

Opinion about the Book

Toshikazu Kawaguchi tells the story in his own unique way. The story is light enough and is dominated by the protagonists. When you read the book, you will feel warm. If you enjoy the fantasy genre, I believe you will enjoy this book as well. It allows us to imagine something that will never happen in reality. Many people may wish to travel back in time but are unable to do so; however, this book allows you to do so.

However, there are a few things that bother me. I think the plot of this book is predictable, and several things are repeated in each chapter of the story, such as the example of café rules being repeated in several chapters. This, in my opinion, makes the story a little monotonous and wordy. As a reader, I was interested in the story’s continuation, but it kept repeating the same parts that were mentioned in the first chapter. However, all of the stories in this book are enjoyable to me.

Photo : tantridp

What I Discovered From the Book

Traveling back in time is impossible in our lives; however, I discovered from this book that every opportunity we have is priceless. We may not be able to change what happened in the past, but we can change our perspective on the painful events that have occurred in our lives. Although the characters can return to the past, they cannot change what has happened, as stated in the book. Each time a character returns from the past, they gain a new depth of understanding. Nothing has changed about the events of the past, but we can change our perspective on them.

Photo : tantridp

Book’s Rating

I give this book a rating of 3.8/5 based on its entire content and story.

If you like the book story about time travel, this could be an option for you. Overall, I like the idea of this book. It could be one of the books you read in your spare time. Oh, and if you enjoy watching movies, you can find the movie version on the internet. Before the Coffee Gets Cold was also made into a movie. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I plan to do so someday. I’m interested to see how the characters from the book are pictured in the movie. It’ll be enjoyable. In any case, the second book in the Before the Coffee Gets Cold series has yellow covers. Perhaps this can be one of my book wish lists.

I hope you’re having a good time reading this review! Please share your thoughts on the book if you have read it!



Tantri DP