My Ratings: 5/5 stars
About this book:
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.
How come Murakami creates such extraordinary scenes with unusual characters and STILL makes them relatable?
Each story in this book deals with one measure theme. Men without women. If you are unsure of what that means, just read the last story.
The book starts with ‘Drive my car’, the story of an actor who lost his wife and realises before she died, she cheated on him. So there is an emerging friendship he has with his new female driver along with the sense of loss with his wife. that recurrent theme occurs in every story.
My personal favourite has to be the last one ‘Men without women’ where everything comes together. Moreover, it is more eccentric than the rest of the stories, though the ending is just as vague.
Just now I am realising why Murakami’s stories are so relatable. he doesn’t give them a rigid ending. Like life, these stories are all left somewhere in the middle, carrying on way past the purpose of telling them.
Yesterday was the most interesting and practical story and made me look at the book cover in a new light. That image of melting moon is imprinted on my mind. Because the beauty of Murakami’s words is that their effect lingers way after you have finished reading them.
My least favourite story is the most intense one there was, ‘An independent organ’. That is toxic love that makes you reduce yourself to nothing.
Then there is Scheherazade, like the girl in 1001 nights who was supposedly an eel in her last life. That story made me wonder about how obsessed infatuation feels like.
The most difficult story to understand was ‘Kino’ and though I got chills reading the last few lines, it will take me a couple more rereads to completely comprehend it.
Then there is the unique story ‘Samsa in Love’. Murakami writes Kafka’s ‘Metamorphosis’ in reverse. That makes you wonder what it means to be human. Beautiful, each word, each sentence, each story.