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1Q84 Audiobook

1Q84

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Publisher's Summary

The year is 1984 and the city is Tokyo.

A young woman named Aomame follows a taxi driver's enigmatic suggestion and begins to notice puzzling discrepancies in the world around her. She has entered, she realizes, a parallel existence, which she calls 1Q84 - "Q" is for "question mark". A world that bears a question.

Meanwhile, an aspiring writer named Tengo takes on a suspect ghostwriting project. He becomes so wrapped up with the work and its unusual author that, soon, his previously placid life begins to come unraveled.

As Aomame's and Tengo's narratives converge over the course of this single year, we learn of the profound and tangled connections that bind them ever closer: a beautiful, dyslexic teenage girl with a unique vision; a mysterious religious cult that instigated a shoot-out with the metropolitan police; a reclusive, wealthy dowager who runs a shelter for abused women; a hideously ugly private investigator; a mild-mannered yet ruthlessly efficient bodyguard; and a peculiarly insistent television-fee collector.

A love story, a mystery, a fantasy, a novel of self-discovery, a dystopia to rival George Orwell's, 1Q84 is Haruki Murakami's most ambitious undertaking yet: an instant best seller in his native Japan, and a tremendous feat of imagination from one of our most revered contemporary writers.

BONUS AUDIO: Audible interviews the translators of 1Q84, Jay Rubin and Philip Gabriel.

VIDEO: Our narrators step in front of the camera to read your thoughts on Murakami.

©2011 Haruki Murakami (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Murakami is like a magician who explains what he's doing as he performs the trick and still makes you believe he has supernatural powers.... But while anyone can tell a story that resembles a dream, it's the rare artist, like this one, who can make us feel that we are dreaming it ourselves." (The New York Times Book Review)

“Profound . . . A multilayered narrative of loyalty and loss . . . A fully articulated vision of a not-quite-nightmare world . . . A big sprawling novel [that] achieves what is perhaps the primary function of literature: to reimagine, to reframe, the world . . . At the center of [1Q84’s] reality . . . is the question of love, of how we find it and how we hold it, and the small fragile connections that sustain us, even (or especially) despite the odds . . . This is a major development in Murakami’s writing . . . A vision, and an act of the imagination.” (David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times)

1Q84 is one of those books that disappear in your hands, pulling you into its mysteries with such speed and skill that you don’t even notice as the hours tick by and the mountain of pages quietly shrinks . . . I finished 1Q84 one fall evening, and when I set it down, baffled and in awe, I couldn’t help looking out the window to see if just the usual moon hung there or if a second orb had somehow joined it. It turned out that this magical novel did not actually alter reality. Even so, its enigmatic glow makes the world seem a little strange long after you turn the last page. Grade: A.” (Rob Brunner, Entertainment Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (6077 )
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4.2 (5377 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mary The Dalles, OR, United States 05-15-12
    Mary The Dalles, OR, United States 05-15-12 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Irony of a Poorly Written Book"

    In the year 1Q84, we are introduced to two parallel stories. In one, author Tengo revises an extremely poorly written book-- helping it to win a writing contest and become a best seller. Oh, how I wish he could have revised 1Q84! I am unsure if the problem comes from having the voices of two separate translators, or if this was just a truly poorly written book. A good editor could have reduced the download by at least ten hours and nothing would have been lost. In fact, I skipped one entire section and still could follow the tedious redunancy. One of the most irritating aspects was the repetition of thoughts, facts and actions echoed by the characters both aloud and in their thoughts. Originally the book was published as a three book serial in Japan. A good editor could have removed much of the unnecessary repetition--especially for the audible version. The book within the book was described as "awkward but with great promise." Unfortunately, the same could be said for this download.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    VB 05-14-12
    VB 05-14-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Sexually Explicit Content"
    Would you listen to 1Q84 again? Why?

    I would not listen to this story again. I think Murakami wrote better books and the sexually explicit content made me uncomfortable.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    I liked three stories that converge in the end.


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    Each of the narrators did a wonderful job at making each character distinct.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B. North Minnesota 05-13-12
    B. North Minnesota 05-13-12 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    1080
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    Story
    "Wow!"

    Murakami creates this hauntingly strange world with sticky characters that capture the imagination, both the plot and each character is a mixture of light and shadows, enough of a plot to keep me intrigued.

    I have only read the WindUp Girl and that book was only ok for me, so I did not understand they hype about Murakami, now I am so glad I took another chance and read this!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Spring, TX, United States 05-12-12
    Mark Spring, TX, United States 05-12-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    22
    2
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    0
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    Story
    "Twisting Plot, Disappointing Conclusion"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Explain more of the twists;- What happened to Tengo's mother- Why did the Nurse in Cat Town die once- Etc.
    Maybe I'm just missing something?


    What could the authors have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Could have been shorter - lots of tangents


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    The odd female narration fits well with the unusual story line.The male narration is a welcome relief though - interwoven with the the female.


    Do you think 1Q84 needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I think it needs one - lots of unanswered questions.But not sure I could wade thru a follow up....


    Any additional comments?

    Lots of loose ends left at the conclusion of the story.Who the heck was the NHK Collector knocking on peoples doors? The ghost of Tengo's father????

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara 05-12-12
    Barbara 05-12-12 Member Since 2009

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    66
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    30
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    7
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    Story
    "Amazing, compelling, literary!"

    I'm not much for Sci-Fi though I do enjoy Margaret Atwood and Kurt Vonnegut. So I hesitated to try this one. Until I heard someone read Chapter 1 on a Selected Shorts podcast and became intrigued. I thoroghly enjoyed this book and didn't want it to end.
    The seemingly slow pace was perfect for the very interior quality of the story. We really get to know the main characters through their thoughts. The shifts of perspective among the characters were well timed, not confusing. I thought I might have trouble with the Japanese names so I started out writing them down but there was no need--they were different enough and each character had such unique distinguishing features that it was no problem!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allison NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA, United States 05-11-12
    Allison NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA, United States 05-11-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "meh, then good, then disappointing"

    This is my third Murakami book, and I'll be taking a break for a while. I find the supernatural in his books entertaining, but when he relies so heavily on it, and doesn't wrap it up in the end, I'm disappointed.
    It took a while for me to get into this book, in the middle I thoroughly enjoyed it, then the ending left me wanting resolutions for plot points I thought were important elements to the story. Oh well, moving on now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christos Greece 05-07-12
    Christos Greece 05-07-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Enjoyable but lengthy"

    When trying to remember how the various incidents and events of the story were connected, I realized that the book could have been half its length and still surreal and atmospherical. However, it remains an excellent and unique book, definitely recommended, unless you get bored or impatient too quickly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeanne Coldwater, MI, United States 05-06-12
    Jeanne Coldwater, MI, United States 05-06-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "Hard listen"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Nobody, it was a hard listen, very very slow. I never even made it thru the first of four downloads.


    Has 1Q84 turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Not genre, just author.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    None.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    None I could make it to. Just a waste of money and time for me.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RaineDay 05-05-12
    RaineDay 05-05-12 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    "You have to enjoy the "getting there""

    This is much too long for the little substance there is. What kept me listening was the wonderful narration, especially by Allison Hiroto. She made the main character real for me.
    There is too much repetition and detail making it about three times longer than necessary. I often found I was no longer listening but did not need to replay as I had missed nothing.
    I often thought of abandoning. The story is good but not worth 44 hours. If I had been reading the book I would definitely have given up after a few hundred pages but the fine narration made it always a good listening experience.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily Davis 05-05-12
    Emily Davis 05-05-12 Member Since 2010

    publicEmily

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    37
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting story and good narrators"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I love Murakami novels, and this one didn't disappoint. It was weird enough, but also logical enough to follow. It's a long book, so if you're looking for something to really immerse yourself in, this could be for you. I would definitely recommend it to a friend.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Even though he comes in late in the book, Oshikawa is great. I laughed aloud a couple of times during his parts. Such a villain!


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    The narrators are great. They do multiple characters well, and are pretty natural. I did find the speed of the book slow, but it was slow enough that I could speed it up in the audible app and it still seemed pretty normal.I compare all narrators to my gold standard, which are the narrators in The Help. These narrators are very different, but so is the novel. They are more... formal, in a way.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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