Haruki Murakami Page 2

  • Shinji 28 Aug 2008 21:18:07 5,902 posts
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    I love most of Murakami's books, although some are certainly easier to get into than others - Norwegian Wood and Sputnik Sweetheart flow beautifully from start to finish, while Hard Boiled Wonderland... definitely requires a bigger investment of imagination.

    It's his short stories that really captivate me, though. That's where he really shines - picking up these little stilted slices of life and crystallising them in perfectly described little narratives. I sometimes feel like his novels leave too much hanging, or lack pacing in places - his short stories, though, are just perfectly formed, long enough to engross you but short enough to leave you intrigued at the end. After The Quake is probably my favourite of his books as a result - although I love Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman as well. It just hasn't had as much time to sink in with me, I guess.
  • Articulate-Troll 28 Aug 2008 21:56:54 3,098 posts
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    Really enjoyed Wind up Bird Chronicles, although it definitely asks more questions than it answers. My favourite bits were the stories from the past; Murakami definitely has a knack for period writing, and I'd be curious to know if he's ever written full length pre-fifties novel?

    Currently reading Underground, which is basically a collection of interviews with those involved in the Sarin nerve gas attack. It's a little dry to be honest, and I would have liked to have had more insight from Murakami himself, although some stories really stand out due to the impact on the interviewees life.
  • dmj 28 Aug 2008 21:59:39 1,044 posts
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    I think the point of Underground is that he didn't want to give his opinion (although he does say a little at the end). The focus is on the victims (and Aum members in the second part). Think he says something like that in the introduction.
  • TakeTheVeil 28 Aug 2008 22:25:07 5,057 posts
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    DrEggtimer wrote:
    EDIT: Incidentally, I read Dance Dance Dance not long after I read Number9Dream, by David Mitchell, and it's immediately obvious from having read the two so close together, that Mitchell is a massive Murakami "fan"...

    Haha, I read Number9Dream after Kafka and thought the exact same thing.

    (Confession: only made it half way through Number9Dream)
  • Genji 29 Aug 2008 11:21:54 19,682 posts
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    He has done a non-fiction book too, about the sarin gas attacks in Tokyo. Some of the interviews he did with the survivors and cult members are quite disturbing.

    It's called Underground, if anyone wants to know. Fascinating stuff.
  • trickykid 29 Aug 2008 12:10:17 2 posts
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    Just saw this thread, I own and have read all of his work and absolutely love them. Norwegian Wood is a good place to start for a newbie but Dance Dance Dance is possibly the best.

    I love the way he incorporates cats, ears and hotels in to a lot of his work... not all at the same time necessarily!

    Underground is amazing but mainly due to the events being so horrific that the eye witness accounts make it very real.
  • pinkds 18 Sep 2008 21:24:35 1,601 posts
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    Haruki Murakami is my favourite author. I've read everything he's ever written and I even have an original copy of 'Hear the Wind Sing'. If you've not read it, then get it tomorrow. Also Tony Takitani is worth a watch, you can get this on Amazon. He also has a short film at the con-can film festival 2008 entitled:

    On Seeing The 100% Perfect Girl One Beautiful April Morning

    It's one of his earlier short stories.

    If you're looking for an easy way to get into his books, I'd start with some of his short stories, Blind Woman, Sleeping Willow is a great place to start. If you're a fan of Franz Kafka then try Hard Boiled... the most strange one of his books - you may have to read this three times to actually understand it, and reading Wild Sheep Chase first might help a bit.

    Some of his books lead on from others although this is open to interpretation, and if you do read them out of order it doesn't matter too much as they are amazing stories in themselves.
  • dmj 18 Sep 2008 21:30:17 1,044 posts
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    pinkds wrote:
    I even have an original copy of 'Hear the Wind Sing'.

    Bastard.

    Tony Takitani is a gorgeous film, yeah.
  • pinkds 18 Sep 2008 21:34:49 1,601 posts
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    I've been spending the whole evening trying to down load the con can film, for some reason it won't down load! SO IRRITATING!

    Tony Takitani is such a depressingly lonely film, you really feel for the main character.
  • dmj 18 Sep 2008 21:43:50 1,044 posts
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    It's one of my favourite short stories of his, so I'll look out for the film.

    I do feel sorry for Tony, but he's probably better off alone. (He was until he met his wife, anyway.)
  • pinkds 18 Sep 2008 21:49:04 1,601 posts
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    I'm hoping to watch it tonight... if it downloads...... I'll review it tomorrow
  • craigy Staff 7 Oct 2008 13:48:38 9,474 posts
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    Just bought Kafka on the Shore for my holiday reading. Lovely.
  • Deleted user 7 October 2008 14:41:51
    I'm addicted to this man. Someone save me from Murakami and Stephen King, it's all I ever read.
  • Kujata 15 Aug 2009 12:19:38 2,302 posts
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    RESURRECTION

    Hello there, i have become a big Haruki Murakami fan since discovering him last September. So far i have read After Dark, Norwegian Wood, A Wild Sheep Chase, Dance Dance Dance, After The Quake, South of the Border West of he Sun, and Hard Boiled Wonderland and End of the World.

    Wild Sheep Chase and Hard Boiled have definitively been my favorite books so far, whilei was a little unimpressed by South of the Border and After the Quake. Based on that what should I read next?
  • GrandpaUlrira 15 Aug 2009 12:46:17 3,854 posts
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    Another one asking for recommendations... I loved Norwegian Wood, and enjoyed, but didn't love, Hard-boiled Wonderland. Where now for this intrigued forumite?
  • Genji 15 Aug 2009 12:50:57 19,682 posts
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    Um. Kafka on the Shore? It's not as strange as HBW. It's my favorite of his books, not counting the non-fiction one about the religious cult.
  • Deleted user 15 August 2009 13:41:05
    Sputnik Sweetheart or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle would be my recommends GU
  • itamae 15 Aug 2009 13:49:13 10,213 posts
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    In my opinion Murakami's style is more palatable in short story form, so I'd recommend Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman. Some great stories in that book, and none of them outstay their welcome.
  • localnotail 15 Aug 2009 14:42:26 23,072 posts
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    Kujata you can borrow my copy of Wind-up Bird Chronicle if you want. It was the first one of his that I ever read - like all of his books (IMO) it takes a while to settle into his world and they you are lost.

    although it's only 6.29 with free delivery at Amazon right now.

    damn this Amazon book sale. I had money I was supposed to spend on clothes this month but I've just bought books instead.
  • Kujata 15 Aug 2009 15:02:55 2,302 posts
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    Cheers local, that would be grand.

    I generally prefer the books in which he explores odd alternate realities (Hard Boiled was great for this) but even the more vanilla books like Norwegian Wood keep me hooked on the great characters and descriptive writing alone.

    I'll consider whether to buy it (along with Charlie Brooker's Dawn of the Dumb) this afternoon. If i don't buy it i'll PM you my address. TYVM.
  • localnotail 15 Aug 2009 16:04:41 23,072 posts
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    Kujata wrote:
    Cheers local, that would be grand.

    I generally prefer the books in which he explores odd alternate realities (Hard Boiled was great for this) but even the more vanilla books like Norwegian Wood keep me hooked on the great characters and descriptive writing alone.

    I'll consider whether to buy it (along with Charlie Brooker's Dawn of the Dumb) this afternoon. If i don't buy it i'll PM you my address. TYVM.

    Cool. you'll like Wind-up Bird then. A lot, I imagine. Plus it's much longer than his other ones.

    damn you for mentioning that Brooker book though - it's only 3.99 at Amazon (6 off). But I needed new pants :(
  • Kujata 15 Aug 2009 17:10:19 2,302 posts
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    localnotail wrote:
    Kujata wrote:
    Cheers local, that would be grand.

    I generally prefer the books in which he explores odd alternate realities (Hard Boiled was great for this) but even the more vanilla books like Norwegian Wood keep me hooked on the great characters and descriptive writing alone.

    I'll consider whether to buy it (along with Charlie Brooker's Dawn of the Dumb) this afternoon. If i don't buy it i'll PM you my address. TYVM.

    Cool. you'll like Wind-up Bird then. A lot, I imagine. Plus it's much longer than his other ones.

    damn you for mentioning that Brooker book though - it's only 3.99 at Amazon (6 off). But I needed new pants :(

    Yeah, but pants don't keep you entertained and make you laugh. Well not as much.

    Ah so Wind Up Bird is a long book then? I'm a slow reader so it will take me a while, is that OK? Glad to hear it is another of Murakami's 'odd' books though, he does that so well.
  • localnotail 15 Aug 2009 17:45:03 23,072 posts
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    true enough. who needs pants anyway?

    yes, it's longer, I'd say twice as long as Sheep Chase. /checks. yes, well, twice as many pages and roughly the same size print. If you are borrowing mine then you can keep it as long as you want, I re-read it a couple of years ago and I bought a full foot of books yesterday including the new Neal Stephenson one which is (as usual) huge. So it's not coming back into rotation for a year or so, at least.

    and yes. it's very odd. :)
  • GrandpaUlrira 15 Aug 2009 22:33:38 3,854 posts
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    Hmmm, so from my point of view there isn't an obvious consensus about what to go for next, so I suspect I might go for Kafka on the Shore given that it was recommended first.
  • localnotail 15 Aug 2009 23:11:47 23,072 posts
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    Sorry, I missed your post. I think you might like Dance Dance Dance. It's more like Norwegian Wood than Hard Boiled.
  • Kujata 15 Aug 2009 23:30:27 2,302 posts
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    Dance Dance Dance is great, though i would read Wild Sheep Chase before it. Though they aren't strictly prequel and sequel, there are some characters and references in DDD that make more sense if you have already read WSC.
  • Deleted user 15 August 2009 23:43:17
    I read half of....Hard-boiledWonderland (if that's what it's called) and I put it down. Just didn't fit with me, and I like authors that do this kinda stuff.
  • boo 29 Oct 2009 10:29:17 13,661 posts
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    Reading Hard-Boiled Wonderland now - loving it!

    Weird, definitely, but great!
  • famous_roy 29 Oct 2009 10:38:32 4,126 posts
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    Love Murakami!

    Read almost all his stuff now like a true geek. Working my way through his short stories, quite hit and miss. Excellent tale in Blind Willow about friends who live at the coast and brave a hurricane, proper harrowing like.
  • modo_komodo 29 Oct 2009 10:49:15 1,197 posts
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    UncleLou wrote:
    He's great.

    I've got to admit though that I found Hard-bolied Wonderland a bit tedious. My favourite is The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles.

    I read that but I had no fucking idea what was going on.
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