Norwegian Wood

Norwegian Wood Description:

Toru a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo is devoted to Naoko a beautiful and introspective young woman but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable As she retreats further into her own world Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman br br A poignant story of one college student s romantic coming of age b Norwegian Wood b takes us to that distant place of a young man s first hopeless and heroic love

Rating: 3.36 out of 5

Kafka on the Shore

Kafka on the Shore Description:

i Kafka on the Shore i is powered by two remarkable characters a teenage boy Kafka Tamura who runs away from home either to escape a gruesome oedipal prophecy or to search for his long missing mother and sister and an aging simpleton called Nakata who never recovered from a wartime affliction and now is drawn toward Kafka for reasons that like the most basic activities of daily life he cannot fathom br br As their paths converge and the reasons for that convergence become clear Haruki Murakami enfolds readers in a world where cats talk fish fall from the sky and spirits slip out of their bodies to make love or commit murder i Kafka on the Shore i displays one of the world s great storytellers at the peak of his powers

Rating: 3.46 out of 5

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle Description:

Japan s most highly regarded novelist now vaults into the first ranks of international fiction writers with this heroically imaginative novel which is at once a detective story an account of a disintegrating marriage and an excavation of the buried secrets of World War II br br In a Tokyo suburb a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife s missing cat Soon he finds himself looking for his wife as well in a netherworld that lies beneath the placid surface of Tokyo As these searches intersect Okada encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists a psychic prostitute a malevolent yet mediagenic politician a cheerfully morbid sixteen year old girl and an aging war veteran who has been permanently changed by the hideous things he witnessed during Japan s forgotten campaign in Manchuria br br Gripping prophetic suffused with comedy and menace i The Wind Up Bird Chronicle i is a tour de force equal in scope to the masterpieces of Mishima and Pynchon br br Three books in one volume The Thieving Magpie Bird as Prophet The Birdcatcher This translation by Jay Rubin is in collaboration with the author

Rating: 3.70 out of 5

1Q84

1Q84 Description:

b The year is and the city is Tokyo b br br A young woman named Aomame follows a taxi driver s enigmatic suggestion and begins to notice puzzling discrepancies in the world around her She has entered she realizes a parallel existence which she calls Q Q is for question mark A world that bears a question Meanwhile an aspiring writer named Tengo takes on a suspect ghostwriting project He becomes so wrapped up with the work and its unusual author that soon his previously placid life begins to come unraveled br br As Aomame s and Tengo s narratives converge over the course of this single year we learn of the profound and tangled connections that bind them ever closer a beautiful dyslexic teenage girl with a unique vision a mysterious religious cult that instigated a shoot out with the metropolitan police a reclusive wealthy dowager who runs a shelter for abused women a hideously ugly private investigator a mild mannered yet ruthlessly efficient bodyguard and a peculiarly insistent television fee collector br br A love story a mystery a fantasy a novel of self discovery a dystopia to rival George Orwell s i Q i is Haruki Murakami s most ambitious undertaking yet an instant best seller in his native Japan and a tremendous feat of imagination from one of our most revered contemporary writers

Rating: 3.32 out of 5

Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World Description:

A narrative particle accelerator that zooms between Wild Turkey Whiskey and Bob Dylan unicorn skulls and voracious librarians John Coltrane and i Lord Jim i Science fiction detective story and post modern manifesto all rolled into one rip roaring novel i Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World i is the tour de force that expanded Haruki Murakami s international following Tracking one man s descent into the Kafkaesque underworld of contemporary Tokyo Murakami unites East and West tragedy and farce compassion and detachment slang and philosophy

Rating: 3.70 out of 5

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage Description:

i Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage i is the long awaited new novel a book that sold more than a million copies the first week it went on sale in Japan from the award winning internationally best selling author Haruki Murakami br br Here he gives us the remarkable story of Tsukuru Tazaki a young man haunted by a great loss of dreams and nightmares that have unintended consequences for the world around us and of a journey into the past that is necessary to mend the present It is a story of love friendship and heartbreak for the ages br br i Description from the inside of the dust jacket i

Rating: 3.28 out of 5

Sputnik Sweetheart

Sputnik Sweetheart Description:

i Alternate cover edition a href https www goodreads com book show sputnik sweetheart rel nofollow here a i br br Sumire is in love with a woman seventeen years her senior But whereas Miu is glamorous and successful Sumire is an aspiring writer who dresses in an oversized second hand coat and heavy boots like a character in a Kerouac novel br br Sumire spends hours on the phone talking to her best friend K about the big questions in life what is sexual desire and should she ever tell Miu how she feels for her Meanwhile K wonders whether he should confess his own unrequited love for Sumire br br Then a desperate Miu calls from a small Greek island Sumire has mysteriously vanished

Rating: 3.72 out of 5

After Dark

After Dark Description:

A short sleek novel of encounters set in Tokyo during the witching hours between midnight and dawn and every bit as gripping as Haruki Murakami s masterworks i The Wind Up Bird Chronicle i and i Kafka on the Shore i br br At its center are two sisters Eri a fashion model slumbering her way into oblivion and Mari a young student soon led from solitary reading at an anonymous Denny s toward people whose lives are radically alien to her own a jazz trombonist who claims they ve met before a burly female love hotel manager and her maid staff and a Chinese prostitute savagely brutalized by a businessman These night people are haunted by secrets and needs that draw them together more powerfully than the differing circumstances that might keep them apart and it soon becomes clear that Eri s slumber mysteriously tied to the businessman plagued by the mark of his crime will either restore or annihilate her br i br After Dark i moves from mesmerizing drama to metaphysical speculation interweaving time and space as well as memory and perspective into a seamless exploration of human agency the interplay between self expression and empathy between the power of observation and the scope of compassion and love Murakami s trademark humor psychological insight and grasp of spirit and morality are here distilled with an extraordinary harmonious mastery

Rating: 3.48 out of 5

A Wild Sheep Chase (The Rat, #3)

A Wild Sheep Chase (The Rat, #3) Description:

A marvelous hybrid of mythology and mystery b A Wild Sheep Chase b i i is the extraordinary literary thriller that launched Haruki Murakami s international reputation br br It begins simply enough A twenty something advertising executive receives a postcard from a friend and casually appropriates the image for an insurance company s advertisement What he doesn t realize is that included in the pastoral scene is a mutant sheep with a star on its back and in using this photo he has unwittingly captured the attention of a man in black who offers a menacing ultimatum find the sheep or face dire consequences Thus begins a surreal and elaborate quest that takes our hero from the urban haunts of Tokyo to the remote and snowy mountains of northern Japan where he confronts not only the mythological sheep but the confines of tradition and the demons deep within himself Quirky and utterly captivating b A Wild Sheep Chase b is Murakami at his astounding best

Rating: 3.33 out of 5

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running Description:

In having sold his jazz bar to devote himself to writing Murakami began running to keep fit A year later he d completed a solo course from Athens to Marathon and now after dozens of such races not to mention triathlons and a dozen critically acclaimed books he reflects upon the influence the sport has had on his life and even more important on his writing Equal parts training log travelogue and reminiscence this revealing memoir covers his four month preparation for the New York City Marathon and takes us to places ranging from Tokyo s Jingu Gaien gardens where he once shared the course with an Olympian to the Charles River in Boston among young women who outpace him Through this marvelous lens of sport emerges a panorama of memories and insights the eureka moment when he decided to become a writer his greatest triumphs and disappointments his passion for vintage LPs and the experience after fifty of seeing his race times improve and then fall back By turns funny and sobering playful and philosophical What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is rich and revelatory both for fans of this masterful yet guardedly private writer and for the exploding population of athletes who find similar satisfaction in distance running

Rating: 3.66 out of 5