(This review is spoiler-free, just trigger warnings at the end)
I am a massive Japanese Literature fan and one of my goals for 2018 is to read more Japanese Lit by different authors. I have wanted to read Haruki Murakami for a while now, I always knew I would like his books so I have never been in a rush to read one, if that makes sense? However, I got Norwegian Wood as a Christmas present and it was the first Murakami book I have read. If you’re reading this and do not read Japanese Lit then Murakami is a very famous Japanese author that is unique for his writing style.
Norwegian Wood is one of my all time favourite books that I have read so far. It is about a man called Toru Watanabe who hears a version of the Beatles’ Norwegian Wood, and the music transports him back 18 years to his college days where he was in love with a girl called Naoko, the girlfriend of his best friend. The rest of the book tells you all about his college days and his romantic relationships and his unique friendships. It is also about how he copes with love, sex, tragedy, and loss. It is interesting to read about what Toru gets up to during these years and the unique friends he made and many parts of this book had me laughing. It is also interesting to read about the culture in Japan, what their lifestyles are like, and their cooking etc. I am very interested in Japanese culture so I loved that this book was set in Tokyo. I love Murakami’s writing style, this first-person book draws you in and makes you connect with all the characters. His writing is extremely descriptive and I especially liked it when he was describing the weather. I liked the little detail about the characters in this book that Murakami included, for example, what books Toru was reading.
My favourite character is Midori, I have never witnessed a character like her before, she is almost relatable and a joy to read about. She is funny and says things that we have all thought but never wanted to say out loud. Each character in this book has their own story and I loved that. The characters were enjoyable to read about because there were around the similar age as me, some were relatable and some were definitely not. There wasn’t a line in this nearly 400-page book that did not interest me, it is an enjoyable and easy read, but it does tackle some difficult topics. and I definitely recommend it. I read this book very slowly because I did not want it to end, such an amazing book and Haruki Murakami is a brilliant author.
(TRIGGER warning: this book includes death, depression, sex, r*pe, suicide)
thank you for reading guys, have you read any Murakami? Let me know in the comments x x