©2006 Haruki Murakami; (P)2006 Naxos AudioBooks
This was a bit long, and bogged down at times, but the nature of the story kept me listening. Unusual characters with lots of eccentricity move the plot along. This feature was what kept me intrigued with the book, when I might have just hit the delete button.
If you like magical realism, then this audio is for you. I read this in print over 10yrs ago and was hooked on Murakami for life. Hearing it again in audible, I was equally impressed. I can not wait till audible gets the whole Murakami library, but for now I will relish every title they've recently added.
Although the beginning had a very slow start, I was just becoming somewhat interested in the characters when this book took a bizarre twist. Believe me, I’m open-minded. I have read and listened to thousands of books. I don’t mind bizarre when it’s appropriate, when it works. This book had some interesting moments and characters, but somewhere toward the middle of the book stopped making complete sense. I thought that maybe it was a cultural difference that I just didn’t understand. There were just too many disconnects.
and a great narrator. He really does a good job. It is admiring how he manages to keep the characters voices from one another without mixing. Exciting spinoffs, like the "scenes" from the wwar2 in manchuria.
Mr. Wind-up Bird....yes, i will certainly read more from this author.
This book has an enormous number of episodes, almost all of them trivial and arbitrary, hardly relevant to an extremely dim and unsatisfactory plot. It is rich in detail - too rich for my taste - and includes some interesting Japanese history. If you have a lot of time to spare, and don't mind ridiculous mysticism (taking charge of somebody else's dream, for only one instance) then you might enjoy it. Otherwise, stay away!
Like an earlier reviewer, I also like long, unabridged booktapes. I barely got through this one. If you like exciting, linear, plot-driven narrative, then forget about it. This book was simply strange. It wasn't necesarily bad, just strange. Also, if you have kids you should know that there are graphic descriptions of sexual acts.
This book was just too far "over the top" for me. Maybe it was the translation, maybe it is just the way of the oriental thought pattern; maybe just the Murakami style of fiction. But something was lost. Too "fantastical"; too immaginative; too "unbelievalble". Adventure and the supernatural can be great if done w/ some sense of realtiy, but this one really went a bit far into outerspace. Would have given it a 2star, but some of the sexy scenes, and soft-ball gore were well done (so I gave it an extra star). YMMV.
I just couldn't attach to the characters or the disjointed story line. Someone suggested the translation from Japanese to English may be the problem. Long winded episodes and recollections by some characters left me asking, "Why do we care about this?" In an attempt to create mystery the author instead combines too many bizarre, far fetched and frankly boring elements to get a toe hold on the story, if one was intended. The main character is a completely unsympathetic dolt! I wanted to scream at him, "Get a job and out of this story, you idiot!" Poorly connected plot, wandering dialogue, bizarre and unsympathetic characters ... I only made it through the first of the 3 segments. And I must agree with many other reviewers that the reader's attempt to give voice to the female characters is a disaster. Oh, how I tried to finish, to enjoy and find something worthwhile in this book. It's a rare book indeed that I just won't pursue to the end; add this one to that very short list. Maybe if I was alone on a deserted island I'd try to finish it. No, I think I'd be more engaged sifting sand! Do listen to a sample before you download.
I think this is the first book I've read by a Japanese author. I think there's a definite cultural perspective in this book. Every time I came across something that seemed odd, new or different, I tried holding it up to the light, turning it this way and that, and trying to see it with new eyes. I'm not entirely sure this strategy worked. Perhaps it's the fantastical aspects of the book, instead of the cultural one, because I didn't really enjoy this listen. Not to say that I hated it. It just wasn't my thing. It was an interesting adventure, though, that took me out of my familiar literary groove.
Report Inappropriate Content