When writing my novels, there are times when I already have a location in mind and I try to find a way to get it into the book. A good example of this is the hotel in Hijacking Japan. There are other times when I have an image of the sort of place that I want, but haven’t been there. Sometimes the answer is to decide the location where it would be and to invent the place (which has the advantage of getting around any legal problems with the use of name, etc.). However, there are also times when I discover that such a place already exists. This is what happened with Sakura Cafe that also features in Hijacking Japan. I needed somewhere in Ikebukuro in Tokyo. It needed to be easily accessible to the station. And I wanted it to be the sort of place where many foreigners were likely to go to. I soon came across Sakura Cafe (and hotel) as I did some researching on the internet. It seemed perfect. I then visited the cafe in 2015 to check that it would. It did. And, due to the way in which the cafe is discussed in the book, there was no need to change the name, which I also liked due to the symbolism of sakura (cherry blossom) which is something I discuss in my book Japan: The Basics.