Murakami

One of the books (or more like a category of book) I put on my Winter of 2015 Reading List was a chunky novel from my shelves. I have an entire shelf of chunksters, but the one I actually chose to vanquish was 1Q84. Mostly because the only other Murakami I’ve read was Kafka On the Shore, and that was awhile ago. (Awhile being in 2008…I had to go look it up.) Despite not remembering much of the book (okay, the only thing I really remember is that my friend Rochelle named her betta fish Oshima after we finished reading it), I do remember that it was a weirdly entertaining experience. Which is why I bought 1Q84, and also perhaps why it’s been sitting on the shelf for so long.

Anyhoosie. 1Q84 turned out to be weird, but not as entertaining as Kafka. I felt like I spent years reading it (although it was really only a few weeks). This could be because the darn thing was 922 freakin’ pages long. It’s like the equivalent of 2 chunksters!

Anyhoosie again. What the heck was this book about? Well, there was an obsession with the moon (or moons) and uneven boobs. There was a strange cult. There was an alternate reality. There was a fitness instructor slash hit woman that acted for the good of society. There was a math teacher slash wanna be author slash ghost writer (or perhaps ghost re-writer). There was a strange cult. There was a young girl who wrote a story. There was a strange cult. I’m pretty sure there was no sheep, although there was a goat. And did I mention the strange cult?

1Q84

So yeah. That’s what it’s about. Or is it???????

And then, despite my ho-hum response to 1Q84, I immediately ran out and bought The Strange Library. Mostly because it was short. And there is a sheep. Kinda. And while it was even more confusing than 1Q84, it was also SO MUCH BETTER. Mostly because there are pictures (dude, pictures can so make everything better). However, it might make you feel the way about libraries that Jaws made you feel about the ocean. That is, if you saw Jaws. I’ve only ever seen enough to know that I don’t want to see the whole thing.

strange library

So by now you might think I’m Murakami’ed out. Hah. I was, until Belle started talking about Murakami and The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, which I also have (and have had for a very long time) sitting on the shelf (somewhere). So now we’re planning a readalong for May (because we have to survive a Pet Sematary readalong first).

Yes, that’s right. Murakami in May! Who’s in?

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “Murakami

  1. Hey, did you mention a strange cult? 🙂 I think I’ll leave 1Q84 alone for a while. The Strange Library was my first real Murakami (although it probably doesn’t qualify because it was so short. And has pictures. But to me it counts) other than a couple of short stories (one of which I got, the other one went way over my head) and I LOVED it! That weird, weird library, that ending (before the final paragraph ending, I mean, which I am still trying to figure out the True Meaning of). Very enjoyable. I’m really looking forward to the The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle readalong. I wonder if Ti would be up for a reread?!

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  2. Yeah, I know a lot of people who love his work but I’m not sure it’s for me. My brain doesn’t figure out symbolism and meanings.

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  3. Ti

    I have fun with my Wind-Up read along. I had readers from all over the world join that. It’s a trip. I just finished South of the Border, West of the Sun. It’s less woo-woo and more realistic but there is still an “other” world element to it.

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  4. He just scares the bloody hell out of me. Not like scares scares, more like intimidates scares. Have a feeling I’m just not smart enough to get him. I do have The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle on my shelves though…

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    • On no, he’s not scary like A.S. Byatt is scary (ie way over my head vocabulary), Murakami is just… ODD. Like “let’s go to the bottom of this well and just think. It’s quiet down here” odd.

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  5. I only like Murakami’s nonfiction.

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  6. The only think I remember from 1Q84 is the stairs off the highway. Or was that Wind-Up? No, I’m pretty sure 1Q84 is the highway stairs one. right?

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  7. Murakami still scares the crap out of me. The only thing I’ve read by him is his nonfiction running book.

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