Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Most Murakami books I only want to read once, I'd read them again if I could read them for the first time again but I can't. I think this one I could read again. The coming of age story of a 36 year old man. Tsukuru is haunted by the abandonment of his best friends 16 years earlier, his entire adulthood was shaped by the fact that they left him without reason. It wasn't until a girlfriend told him he deserved to know why that he finally decided to get to the root of the problem. The first half of the book focuses on the time right after his friends left him in flash backs between high school, college and present. The second half is his journey to track down his old friends and ask them why. Through the asking of why he learns more about him self and the world than he had in the previous 16 years.
It was really good. It has all of Murakami's regular characters- music, whiskey, fixation on breasts, dreams, and trains. All of Murakmai's books feel very comfortable because you know all those things will be there. Another thing that's always there is the sad and kinda pathetic male character. A male character without any really outstanding characteristics. Plain, boring men. Men with jobs and good lives all around but nothing exceptional about them. Meeting them once you would't remember them- Tsukuru is no exception here. Why did his friends find him such good company? Why does his girlfriend like him so much? He leads such a boring life and has literally NO INTERESTS. Then there are the women in Murakami's stories that are always so damaged- there's always a woman with some sort of mental illness or a woman who has been damaged by men- always. In fact mental illness does seem to always be involved too- depression, suicide.
I loved the book, it was not a feel good book. It wasn't a horribly depressing book either. Also spoiler alert- the ending is very unsatisfying but I don't think there was another way out that would have left me satisfied. Another book that just makes me want to read more. I found this one light enough to where I don't feel like I need 6 months off Murakami like I did with 1Q84 and Wind Up Bird...those took a toll on my mind...
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