Woohoo My first post of year 2013.It looked like it wouldn’t make it till 3 weeks in this year.But its only 4th Jan :). Howsoever I wanted my first post to be an illustration *sigh* it’s a book review.My 100th post was a Book Review & my new year post is also a book review.:P
by Haruki Murakami
Haruki Murakami is a well known Japanese Fiction Writer.I follow many blog about books & I got a pretty good feedback about his work.So going against my preferred genre of Non-Fiction, I bought this 1Q84 trilogy by Murakami. And I have to say, I will prefer non-fiction books over fiction any time. What attracted me to 1Q84 was that it was fantasy ,however, it came out to be a love story.I don’t much like love-stories ( so already biased against it) and to make the matter worse it gave me a feeling of Bollywood style love-stories – yash raj production style.
The book is around 1300 pages long & came in one binding, so it took considerable amount of time to read(1 month because it lost me at places).It is mainly based around two characters Aomame & Tengo. There are mysterious Little People, who make Air Chrysallis and around them an self-sustained village form a cult.Both Aomames’ & Tengos’ acts create problems for this cult & they get entangled into some risky situations.There is a peculiar & eccentric 17yr girl Fuka-eri who plays an important part in all the commotions as she was the one who saw the little people first.And she is like a ghost coming into the story at her whims & vanishing from it.She was also an open-end. Aomame messes with the cult due to her clandestine work.But Aomame & Tengo never meet each other in the whole book except in the climax.When they were in 10yr old they held their hands together & that has been keeping them in love for all these 20 something yr.And in the climax they meet just like that with a phone call to Tengo to meet Aomame. Nothing dramatic.Then they again hold their hands & stay together….(sorry,I can’t write it like this any more – love stories unnerve me somewhat)
I didn’t get a whole or big picture of the story.It was like disintegrated pieces which started with some new connections & finished with lose ends.The mystery of Little people was not much explained or had any part in it.Their were many characters which just came into the story & just like that went out of focus.No back-stories about them – where they went, what happened to them – only open ends.And the writing style – amazing. That’s what grabbed me from the start , all the minute details that you can visualize it lucidly.Well, you don’t find this style in non-fictions, it’s a forte of fiction genre.
It is said that Murakami messes up with your mind and it is true.It does mess up with your mind.I am still unsatisfied by the open ends.The chapters in there singularity will look amazing but when you place everything together it looks haywire.And some details just annoyed me with there repetitions. The book will be half the size if you carve out the redundant paras.Also the details about other literary works looked like suggestions to the readers – ‘go read this book if you want to grasp the real meaning of this conversation’.The worst thing for me was the ‘Yash Raj Style’ love story & ending. The girl feels she is in love with the guy & vice-versa because of the hand they held together & after 20yr they still are in love with each other.(Totally like Yash Raj – Instead of imagining a Japanese Tengo, I started to look him as SRK Tengo..:p)
Finally, I would say 1Q84 is amazing in bits but bot in bites.If you like love-stories & mystery & fantasy- pick this up.For me, it looked like a not so good use of my time.(It happens with books).But, It does messes up your head.
P.S – loved the book cover though.