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Search tags: Haruki-Murakami
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review 2017-04-19 18:50
Hmmmm..
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle - Jay Rubin,Haruki Murakami

I received this book as a Xmas present and started reading it in early January. For one reason or the other, I put it down, and only recently picked it back up again. Today I finally finished it! I must admit that this was a very strange read, perhaps even stranger for me than 'An Invitation to A Beheading' by Vladimir Nabokov. Needless to say, I found it very eccentric and to be honest this is my first time reading anything by Murakami. So I could just not be used to his writing style. But based on what I've read from this title, this is what I think. From the beginning, I was fascinated by what was happening, charmed even. Even if some of the events going on in the book were a bit odd, it was enduring. However, that eventually grew old and I found myself not being able to pay attention.

 

A lot of the book dragged on and on and was very long winded. I hated to say there were several parts that I active was saying 'Get to the point already!' Yet at other parts, I would find myself drawn in and there I was immersed once more. But the same feeling would return and I felt like this continued to be an endless cycle. I'll be the first to admit there were several times, that I didn't have a clue about what was going on. Whether it is mine lack of understanding of what the author was trying to bring forth, or whether it truly just filler, I don't know. But the overall book felt very manic pixie dream to me. But I can't dislike this title either because there were parts that I thoroughly enjoyed. Maybe someday I'll go back and re-read and change my stance, but for now, I'm not totally in love with this title.

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review 2017-03-22 15:04
Norwegian Wood
Norwegian Wood - Jay Rubin,Haruki Murakami

Beautifully written and well executed. Unfortunately, by choosing the emotionally distant writing style it fails to move me as a reader.

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review 2017-01-17 16:09
Wind/Pinball: Two Novels by Haruki Murakami; Translated by Ted Goossen
Wind/Pinball: Two novels - Ted Goossen,Haruki Murakami

Being a lover of Japanese literature, and books in general, I've always wanted to give Haruki Murakami's books a try. I've heard nothing but praise for his works so I thought I should give all his works a read. This is a bit of a personal project I've bestowed upon myself: To read at least one Murakami book a month. And, I thought, what better way to start than from the two first novels he's ever written! Well, I have to say that we are not off to a good start.

 

Hear the Wind Sing is his very first novel and it shows. Nothing much happens in this book. It's about an unnamed narrator and his best friend, the Rat, and what they do during a summer the narrator has off from college. But really, all they do is spend it drinking at a bar, talking about women, and that's pretty much it. The narrator has a relationship with a woman who only has nine fingers and their dynamic was... bizarre. I didn't see how that woman found the narrator interesting or how she developed feelings for him. I say this because at the beginning of the book, she detested him. Then, almost over night, she starts to fancy him... what? Why? What did he do in order for her to toss her disdain for him out the window? It made no sense to me. On top of the unbelievable relationship, I was just bored reading it. Nothing really happens in the book. Just a bunch of guys drinking in a bar. I was waiting for something else to happen. Something more interesting. I thought it would happen with the relationship aspect of the book. But no. Nothing. The writing in this first book was also dull. There was no life to it. Basically, Murakami's first novel just wasn't for me.

 

The second novel, Pinball, 1973, was a bit better but not by much. This book takes place several years after the first. The unnamed narrator works for a translation business whilst his friend, the Rat, goes through his own problems with trying to find himself and understand what he wants to do with his life. I'll admit, I liked that aspect of the book quite a bit. At some point in our lives, we all start questioning what we want to do. Who we are. What shall become of us if we don't do something worthwhile. And being able to read and see that side of the Rat was pretty interesting. Also, the writing was a lot more lyrical. There were still plenty of dull patches here and there, but I can tell that Murakami was finding his style a lot more here. So his writing improved a bit! And the translator, Ted Goossen, did a fantastic job in portraying Murakami's meaning well! But that's where my praises end, sadly. The narrator was still so bland that I was still bored when reading about him and his obsession with pinball. Also, there were these twins that intrigued me. I wanted to learn more about them. Like where they came from and what was their purpose for moving in with the main character. But I got none of that. Their sole purpose was to make coffee and have sex with the narrator. That's it. In fact, that's all the women of this book did! The secretary at the translation office only cooked food and cleaned. That's it. The twins made food and had sex. That's it. I knew going in that Murakami tends to be a bit sexist in his novels, but it's so apparent in these two books! So even though I enjoyed this book more... it still wasn't enough to make me fall in love with Murakami as a writer.

 

Now, these are just his first two novels. You can tell they are early works and I know it's his later works that are highly praised so I'm not judging him too harshly. These two weren't for me but I shall continue reading his works to see if he's an author that I will enjoy. I still have hope so in February, I will be reading A Wild Sheep Chase and see how I get on with that one. Hopefully I enjoy it a lot more than his first two novels.

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review 2016-10-28 22:38
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage - Jay Rubin,Philip Gabriel,Haruki Murakami

       Uh, odakle da počnem?

       Otišla sam u antikvarnu knjižaru sa ciljem da sebi uzmem Pekića ili Murakamija. Kako nisu imali ,,Kako upokojiti vampira'', zatražila sam im ovu jer mi je na listi već dve ili tri godine.

       Pre ,,Bezbojnog'', čitala sam ,,Norvešku šumu'' i ,,Južno od granice, zapadno od sunca'' i obema sam bila oduševljena, tako da sam i od ove knjige imala velika očekivanja. Uzimajući u obzir da je Šuma pisana 1987. a Bezbojni 2013., pala mi je na pamet mogućnost da je Murakami utanjio i da me možda neće kupiti a zapravo me je ščepao i držaće me dok ne pročitam sve što je napisao. 

       Pre no što iko počne da čita bilo koju od navedenih knjiga, trebalo bi da zna nešto o Murakamiju i stoga ću ga predstaviti onako kako ga ja vidim pre no što se vratim svojoj rođendanskoj korpi. Kroz sve tri knjige provlači se mrak prisutan u svačijem životu i o kojem retko ko od nas razmišlja. Non stop se javlja motiv nostalgije, priče se vrte oko davno izgubljenih prijatelja i ljubavi, natera vas da se zapitate šta radi prva osoba sa kojom ste se prvi put poljubili i da li je dobro; zatim vas obuzme tuga jer je niste videli godinama i počinjete da preispitujete i uviđate značaj svakog sitnog i naizgled beznačajnog poznanstva u svom životu. Stižete do kraja romana i shvatite da ste glavni lik sve vreme bili vi. Zatvorite treću njegovu knjigu i shvatite da ste posle svake nešto novo o sebi naučili. On se bavi majušnim pojedinostima i svoje likove detaljno izgrađuje. U svakom od njih stoji utkano nešto što ga čini drugačijim od svih likova iz kompletnog Murakamijevog stvaralavštva tako da se nikad nećete sresti sa istom osobom a u dosta njih ćete se naći.

       Što se tiče Bezbojnog Cukurua, naučio me je da ne prestajem da preispitujem sebe iako to često dovodi do same ivice. Naučio me je i da nastavim da preispitujem druge u cilju nalaženja potrebnih odgovora, mira i kako bih se od te ivice udaljila. Za kraj, učvrstio je moje mišljenje da je u redu lutati i ne obazirati se na one koji stoje dok god ne naiđeš na nekoga sa kim ćeš sam poželeti da staneš i posmatraš vozove kako dolaze i odlaze.

 

Ps. Ovo su boje koje mi prolaze kroz glavu dok čitam Murakamijeva dela, ne umem da ih objasnim ali to je to, ovo je on.

 

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quote 2016-10-21 20:22
If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.

—Haruki Murakami

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