Book Tour| Lost in Taiwan – Mark Crilley

Last year I read My Summer with Cass by Mark Crilley and really enjoyed that graphic novel. This year he has a new graphic novel, Lost in Taiwan. I read it and really enjoyed it, but today my stop on the tour hosted by TBR and Beyond Tours I have an interview with the author. So keep on reading to find out more about this new middle grade graphic author and the author.

Lost in Taiwan by Mark Crilley
Genre: Middle Grade Contemporary
Publishing Date: May 23, 2023

A story about stepping out of your comfort zone—literally—on an unlikely journey to making new connections and learning to explore the big wide world around you, Lost In Taiwan is the latest from celebrated graphic novelist Mark Crilley.


The last thing he’s interested in is exploring new countries or experiencing anything that might be described as “cultural enrichment.” But like it or not, he’s stuck with his brother, Theo, for two weeks in Taiwan, a place that—while fascinating to Theo—holds no interest to Paul at all.

While on a short trip to a local electronics store, Paul becomes hopelessly lost in Taiwan’s twisting, narrow streets, and he has no choice but to explore this new environment in his quest to find his way back to Theo’s apartment.

In an unfamiliar place with no friends—and no GPS!—there’s no telling what adventures he could happen upon. And who knows? Maybe it turns out he has friends in Taiwan, after all.

Content Warning: Racial microaggressions

Book Links

Barnes & Noble

Author Interview

What inspired you to write Lost in Taiwan?

I lived in Taiwan for two and a half years, teaching English, studying Chinese, and making loads of wonderful friends. I wanted to create a graphic novel that would pay tribute to the people and culture of Taiwan, and to give readers a taste of what it feels like to be there.


What has been the favorite part of your publishing journey so far?

There’s nothing like getting that first box of books in the mail, especially gorgeous hardcovers like they’ve done for Lost in Taiwan. It’s such a thrill. But a close second is having the chance to go to schools and libraries and meet the readers face to face.


If you were a character in Lost in Taiwan, what kind of character would you be?

Well, there is in fact a character in the story who is based directly on me, more or less: It’s Theo, Paul’s older brother. Theo is completely smitten with Taiwan, and desperately to speak, read, and write in Chinese. That’s exactly the kind of “Taiwan nerd” I was when I lived over there.


Describe Lost in Taiwan in five words or less.

West meets East: Loves it!


What is your favorite quote from Lost in Taiwan?

At one point Wallace comes back with the street food he’s bought as dinner to share with Peijing and Paul, and he says: “I hope you guys are hungry! Because I got one of everything that looked good to me.” Then he adds: “And everything looked good to me.”


What do you hope readers take away from your story?

I hope it makes readers interested in the possibility of visiting Taiwan, or just travelling anywhere outside of their own country. At its heart, the story is all about the magic that occurs when you break out of your own familiar routines and begin to learn about the wider world outside.


Could you give us 5 random facts about Lost in Taiwan (think the story, writing, publishing, anything that comes to mind)?

  1. Most of the book transpires over the course of a single day. Since you stay with the main character Paul for the entirety of that day, you will hopefully get a deeply immersive experience that is fairly unusual in graphic novels. For example, the sun starts going down at one point, and you basically see the sunset, little by little, from one page to the next.
  2. The book’s location, Changbei, is a fictional city. I wanted to be able to include all the different things I loved about my time in Taiwan, without being limited by the particulars of an any one town.
  3. Any time a character in the story speaks Chinese, you see that dialogue written in actual Chinese characters, right there in there inside the speech bubbles. Assuming you can’t read I Chinese, you will experience this dialogue just as our main character, Paul, does in the story: You won’t know what it is they’re saying. I wanted readers to sometimes not know what’s being said, which is part and parcel of being in a foreign land.
  4. This is the first graphic novel I’ve ever done that is in full color. It’s a challenge for an artist to color their own work, since it adds a lot of extra time to the process of creating each page. But I felt the book needed to capture Taiwan in all its visual glory, and a black-and-white or semi-colored story just wasn’t going to cut it.
  5. Throughout the book, between chapters, you see little pen-and-ink drawings that are in quite a different style than the rest of the artwork. These drawings come from the sketchbooks I took with me to Taiwan way back in 1988: They are sketches of actual places and objects that I saw while I was there.

Tour Schedule

If this author interview and synopsis has you curious about Lost in Taiwan, click here for the full tour schedule. Amazing bloggers and bookstagrammers are also talking about this book throughout the week.

About the Author

Mark Crilley is an American comic book creator and children’s book author/illustrator. He is the creator of Miki Falls, Akiko, and Brody’s Ghost. He is also noted for his instructional videos for drawing in the manga-style. Crilley distributes drawing advice to artists via YouTube videos and his DeviantArt account. In August 2010, he starred in some how to draw videos for Funimation on demand. Mark Crilley’s wife is Miki Crilley who he named Miki Falls after. The two have a daughter, Mio, and a son, Matthew.

Author Links


A big thank you to Mark for taking time and answering my interview questions! If you enjoy graphic novels, I definitely recommend picking this one up. The artwork is really stunning.

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