1. Hwaigon
    Offline

    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    628
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Second to the right, and straight on till morning.

    1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by Hwaigon, Dec 21, 2014.

    I didn't go through the previous posts but I hope there isn't such.

    Have you guys read the trilogy? I've been reading it for three years now, having at times this compelling urge
    to read a bit of the book (I have the all-in-one book) and finally finish it. I find it tedious, lengthy, with no real action, just hints of action.

    The trilogy starts off on quite an interesting note but you lose any interest in the next fifty pages describing ordinary lives. Then there is another subtle hint of something interesting going on, which, even if exposed, is, again, ordinary. All three books give the impression of trying to be mysterious, cryptic, the kind of "nothing is the way it seems" but it doesn't work, in my opinion.

    The characters are interesting but they are as if prevented from acting for there to be three books instead of one, so they indulge in indolence, absent-mindedness or obscene conduct.

    Murakami is my favourite writer (that being true, I've read woefully few of his books) but this trilogy almost seems to be written by someone else. I've read Norwegian Wood which won him popularity and it's for a reason; there's a tenth of 1Q84 mystery in it but it's at least five times more interesting, even without the inexplicable. And you can relate to the characters. I've also read Kafka on the Shore which is also mysterious but unlike 1Q84 grabs your attention. Raises your interest, is sometimes outrageous but always interesting. You keep on reading. My opinion is that Murakami should have written one book instead of three.
     
  2. Lemex
    Offline

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2007
    Messages:
    10,507
    Likes Received:
    3,151
    Location:
    Northeast England
    I've read part of the first volume, and I agree with you, and what seems to be the consensus. The work really needs an editor. I mean, I love Murakami, I really do, but he really let all notion of conciseness slip from his mind. It's Murakami alright, and the poetry is there, but it's had more than a few pork pies.

    That said, I've not finished it. I want to, I will do one day, I've just not had the time.
     
    Hubardo likes this.
  3. Hwaigon
    Offline

    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    628
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Second to the right, and straight on till morning.
    The poetry is there, true, a bit different than his other books (if I can judge from the sample I've read, maybe not fully).
    If it is his regular poetic style, then I don't like this particular shade...

    "That said, I've not finished it. I want to, I will do one day, I've just not had the time."
    This sums it up, I've got the same problem.

    I hear The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is excellent. And Undergound. Read any of them?
     
  4. Lemex
    Offline

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2007
    Messages:
    10,507
    Likes Received:
    3,151
    Location:
    Northeast England
    The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is the popular one, that and Kafka on the Shore. I can see why, but I like Kafka on the Shore more. I've not read Underground, though, but everything I've read suggests it's very good.
     
  5. Hwaigon
    Offline

    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    628
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Second to the right, and straight on till morning.
    spoiler alert

    I've read Kafka on the Shore myself, it's an excellent story. I was particularly captivated by the vividness of the beginning -- very suggestive, straightforward and self-reflective. Yet, the book ends with a lot of questions unanswered (or maybe it's that I've read it only once...)

    With this book I sometimes had the feeling that Murakami pushes you into thinking that something impossible will happen (like the stone or the dead body answering the lorry driver's questions) and he uses words like naturally, obviously to dispel that expectation by stating the obvious.

    I wish some Japanese anime production made this into a motion picture. Madhouse production who made Perfect Blue.
    Strongly recommended, by the way. They would make a great Kafka.
     
  6. Hubardo
    Offline

    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,075
    Likes Received:
    566
    Me too. I found Wind Up Bird frankly pretty boring. Like, 80% boring, 20% mind-blowing. The ratio was too much. Kafka is one of my favorite books ever, on the other hand.
     
  7. Hubardo
    Offline

    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,075
    Likes Received:
    566
    The 1Q84 audio book was outstanding. I've never enjoyed an audiobook so much. Super recommend.
     
  8. lustrousonion
    Offline

    lustrousonion Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2014
    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    132
    Location:
    Germany
    Just finished all three and I agree that it was way too long without much action. Could easily have been one very interesting book. I also found Tengo to be a somewhat empty character.
     
    Lemex likes this.
  9. Hwaigon
    Offline

    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    628
    Likes Received:
    139
    Location:
    Second to the right, and straight on till morning.
    I'm on the verge of finishing the final book myself. We could engage in some enlightening discussion on the series. I've got
    some theories. Say, one very obvious but I need to work on it.
     
    Lemex likes this.
  10. Hubardo
    Offline

    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2014
    Messages:
    1,075
    Likes Received:
    566
    That's kinda how Murakami is though. Long winded descriptions of characters cooking rice and fish in their boring apartments in between bizarre sex scenes while fish are falling from the sky or moons happen to have copied and pasted themselves.

    I loved Tengo!
     

Share This Page