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Thread: Haruki Murakami

  1. #51
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    been on a Murakami kick after discovering this thread some months ago. My first time reading him. At the moment I am working my way through all the short story collections.
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  2. #52
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    The short stories, I think, are the best. My favorite is probably Sleep, a novella.

  3. #53
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    New book alert!

    http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/bo...9780385354349/
    A deeply personal, intimate conversation about music and writing between the internationally acclaimed, best-selling author and his close friend, the former conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

    Haruki Murakami’s passion for music runs deep. Before turning his hand to writing, he ran a jazz club in Tokyo, and from The Beatles’ “Norwegian Wood” to Franz Liszt’s “Years of Pilgrimage,” the aesthetic and emotional power of music permeates every one of his much-loved books. Now, in Absolutely on Music, Murakami fulfills a personal dream, sitting down with his friend, acclaimed conductor Seiji Ozawa, to talk, over a period of two years, about their shared interest. Transcribed from lengthy conversations about the nature of music and writing, here they discuss everything from Brahms to Beethoven, from Leonard Bernstein to Glenn Gould, from record collecting to pop-up orchestras, and much more. Ultimately this book gives readers an unprecedented glimpse into the minds of the two maestros.

    It is essential reading for book and music lovers everywhere.

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    My first was Kafka On The Shore. He is a stunning author.

  5. #55
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    And more new fiction coming next year:

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/0451494628/
    A dazzling new collection of short stories--the first major new work of fiction from the beloved, internationally acclaimed, Haruki Murakami since his #1 best-selling Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.

    Across seven tales, Haruki Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone. Here are vanishing cats and smoky bars, lonely hearts and mysterious women, baseball and the Beatles, woven together to tell stories that speak to us all.

    Marked by the same wry humor that has defined his entire body of work, in this collection Murakami has crafted another contemporary classic.

  6. #56
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    Murakami is probably the greatest living fiction author but some of his stuff is hit and miss. Particulary the short stories. The line between genius and stupidity is a narrow one and he is sometimes on both sides of it. I'll read anything he writes though.

  7. #57
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    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/...w/56440856.cms
    Haruki Murakami's new book has a title, though its content remains a mystery.

    "Kishidancho Goroshi," or "Murder of the Knight Commander," will hit Japanese bookstores on Feb. 24. Overseas availability isn't yet known.

    Shinchosha Publishing Co. said Tuesday the book will have two parts, subtitled "Emerging Ideas" and "Moving Metaphor."

    The titles suggest a contrast from the past works by the acclaimed best-selling writer. The publisher would only say more hints would come later.

    His most recent novel "Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage" was released in Japan in 2013.

  8. #58
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    https://www.amazon.com/dp/052552004X/



    https://mainichi.jp/english/articles...0m/0na/022000c
    World-renowned writer Haruki Murakami, whose newest novel, "Kishidancho goroshi" ("Killing Commendatore"), was released in February, spoke recently with the Mainichi Shimbun and other media outlets about his latest work and the role of the novelist in the world today.

    "Killing Commendatore" is Murakami's first multivolume work since "1Q84," which came out 2009-2010 in Japan. The first volume is titled "Arawaru Idea" (Emerging Idea) and the second volume, "Utsurou metaphor" (Moving metaphor).

    The novel marks the first time in a while that Murakami has written in the first person. It is written in the voice of a 36-year-old painter whose wife left him abruptly.

    "At first, I always wrote in the first person, and gradually shifted to the third person," Murakami said. "Having achieved a novel totally in the third-person with '1Q84,' I felt the urge to return to the first person. There was a strong sense that I was returning to my roots, but I think there was a certain maturing of the protagonist as well."

    The "commendatore" originates with the Commendatore from Mozart's opera, "Don Giovanni," who is killed at the outset of the drama. Murakami said that the title, "Killing Commendatore," came to him before he even began writing the novel.

    "I was drawn to the peculiarity of the words," he said. "What I had first was the title, and the place where the story takes place, which is atop a hill in (the Kanagawa Prefecture city of) Odawara. The protagonist became a painter as I was writing."

    The painter -- separated from his wife and searching for something to paint amid his feelings of loss -- finds himself living in a house which belongs to the father of a friend. The father, aged 92, is a renowned Japanese-style painter who now lives in a seniors' home, thus leaving his house empty and available for the protagonist. It is after the protagonist discovers a painting titled "Killing Commendatore" in the attic that he becomes entangled in a cryptic series of events.

    The protagonist is commissioned to paint a portrait by a man with the unusual surname Menshiki. Aged 54, the mysterious Menshiki is a successful businessman living alone in a huge mansion on a hilltop across the valley from the protagonist. According to Murakami, the character was "a type of homage" to the 1925 American classic "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald, which Murakami has translated into Japanese.

    The protagonist hears a bell ringing in the middle of the night, and in his search for the source of the sound, he comes upon a well-like hole in the ground. With Menshiki's cooperation, the protagonist unseals the hole, in which he finds an old bell, the likes of which would be found in a Buddhist altar. As is addressed in the novel itself, the story surrounding the bell is a motif taken from Edo-period novelist Ueda Akinari's short story, "Nise no Enishi" ("A bond for two lifetimes"), which is included in Ueda's collection of short stories, "Harusame Monogatari" ("The tale of spring rain").

    "The classics are valuable when they are cited or referenced," Murakami said. "I reference a lot of things, and that makes it fun. Remarkable tales have power as repositories, and are effective when referenced."

    Once the hole is unsealed, an enigmatic figure called "Idea," who looks exactly like Commendatore in the painting, appears. What unfolds afterward is a world in which good and evil are enmeshed, and bloodshed ensues. The protagonist is led into an underground darkness by figures in the painting, at which point Murakami fans will recognize and savor the signature maze-like elements of the novelist's tales.

    After the protagonist undergoes a gamut of trials and tribulations, he resumes life with his wife, and raises the child his wife became pregnant with while the two were apart. At the end of the book, the story jumps a few years to the period immediately after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, and ends with the protagonist discussing his beliefs as to how he will live his life. The ending marks a shift from loss to renewal.

    "My novels are open-ended, or have mostly ended with the stories still wide open," Murakami explained. "This time, I realized that I'd begun to need a 'sense of closure.' For me, the fact that the protagonist decides at the end to live with the child is to suggest a new kind of conclusion."

    The backdrop against which this shift occurred was a trip that Murakami took in the fall of 2015, in which he drove along the coast from Fukushima to Miyagi prefectures, the area hit hardest by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

    "That was a significant experience. It's linked to the sense of renewal, to the feeling that I must create new things. It may also have to do with the responsibility I feel because of my age," the 68-year-old Murakami stated.

    "I believe the disaster in the Tohoku region left a huge scar on the Japanese people's psyche. To portray the psyche of the people who lived through this particular time without parts that overlap (with the disaster) is unrealistic."

    At the same time, however, the historical scars left by massacres such as the Holocaust and the Nanjing Massacre cast a shadow on the painting, "Killing Commendatore." What was Murakami's intent in inserting references to such historical events?

    "Because history is the collective memory of a nation, I think it is a grave mistake to forget about the past or to replace memory with something else. We must fight against (historical revisionism). Novelists are limited in what we can do, but it is possible for us to fight such forces in the form of storytelling," he said.

  9. #59
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    Looking forward to the new book. The one review that I found was somewhat mixed, but even an average Murakami book is better than most anything else. I wonder if he will do any type of book tour or someone will produce a s/l edition?

  10. #60
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    Amazon has the final cover (I actually liked the simple placeholder, I thought that would be it):


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