I might have liked it in written form, but it's really just a long list of instructions. It doesn't work at all in audio book form.
The list genre? Yes.
I don't quite remember the performance but I think it was OK. There are no characters.
Uhh... the weapons? World peace!
I'll get to Nishii later. As for Kawabata I will definitely try him again because the language and style used was extraordinarily beautiful and I really liked it.
While I do have a very dull theory of why it ended as it did (what did happen isn't explicitly said, but it's quite clear) I just hope there's a better and deeper explanation. So my stance on the ending is that I didn't get it, despite listening through the two last chapters twice.
I've listened to two Mishima books by Brian Nishii before (Temple of the Golden Pavillion and Sound of Waves) and was very impressed with his narration. For this book however I was a bit disappointed. It's still really good, but not nearly as good as his Mishima performances.
What I really like about him, and where I feel he failed a bit here, is that he usually pronounces Japanese names in a very non-garbled non-american accent but still without having it sound forced or interrupting the flow of the text. It still doesn't interrupt the text, but it is a bit less authentic in this one.
Oh, and his interpretation of the younger girl is really annoying. But you get used to it.
I don't think this is the appropriate venue for such confessions.
A lot of it is written from a female perspective by a very male writer. I like having books from a woman's point of view every now and then, but despite being from a female perspective it's very clearly written by a man. We're talking way over 50% of the book being from the women's perspective (there are two of them) with little trace of them having a life that's not circulating around Oki and his son.
Of course, the book is in part a product of it's time and all but this really got to me. It's my only complaint about the book, but it's a big one.
Cryptic. Dreamy. Adolescent.
Overall, I find the Nakata-storyline to be the most interesting. The storyline about Kafka was good too of course (and somehow feels like the main story to me), just not as interesting.
Both narration-wise and character-wise I really liked Ooshima
Moved as in made me a little queasy, yes. The thing with Johny Walker.
I've heard that Murakami himself said this book is supposed to be read several times to find new connections and metaphors baked into the text. But there are parts of the book which is just really strange, and acknowleged as such by the characters as well with no further explanation.
I wouldn't mind this, but some of these things (such as the rains) just feel kind of cheap. I'm sure they had some intended metaphorical meaning, but I didn't get quite get it.
The narration is really good apart from the names, especially Saeki. Despite the names I really enjoyed the narration quite a lot, the one doing Kafka is especially good.
Listened to Temple of the Golden Pavillion (also Mishima) right before. He's a bit stiff, but I love that he actually pronounces the Japanese names correctly. There are several other books I have refrained from downloading because of the awful americanized pronounciations.
That said, I guess I could see how some people not familiar with Japanese would find this annoying because it does stick out a bit in the text and feels as there's a slight emphasis everytime someone's name is read. Luckily, Japanese has really simple phonetic structure so I think anyone (regardless of linguistic background) will get used to it very quickly.
The lighthouse scene was very vividly described, so I enjoyed that part quite a bit. Part with the storm too.
If you're new to Mishima, grab Temple of the Golden Pavillion first (out of the two I've read, maybe The Sailor Who Fell from Grace With the Sea is even better - I refrain from Spring Snow since the sequels aren't available).
Not to be all macho or anything but.. it's a romance novel (youth romance, even) and while I'd never call this book itself bland or boring, the theme really is.
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