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The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki…
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The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle (1995)

by Haruki Murakami

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
14,109289147 (4.21)4 / 899
  1. 132
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    booklove2: Both books involve a displaced from the world character searching for clues to solve mysteries.

(see all 20 recommendations)

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English (257)  Dutch (8)  French (5)  Danish (4)  Spanish (4)  Swedish (4)  Italian (2)  German (2)  Norwegian (1)  Catalan (1)  Hebrew (1)  All (289)
Showing 1-5 of 257 (next | show all)
novel about a man in Japan whose cat and then wife disappears, takes many side trips into the Japanese guilt over WWII attrocities; very experimental writing ( )
  margaretfield | May 30, 2018 |
Dos citas muy interesantes...
“No se me ocurre dónde diablos aprendió estas técnicas, pero poseía el secreto de alcanzar el corazón de las masas. Sabía realmente con que lógica se mueve la masa. En realidad, no era necesaria la lógica. Sólo debía parecerlo. Lo importante era que despertara los sentimientos de la masa”.

“La única coherencia en sus opiniones era la sistemática falta de coherencia, y la única visión del mundo era una visión del mundo que no precisaba visión del mundo”.

H. Murakami en Crónica del pájaro que da cuerda al mundo. ( )
  darioha | May 29, 2018 |
I have slowly been indoctrinated into becoming a Haruki Murakami fan. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle will make the third novel I have read and reviewed for the blog and the excellent memoir, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. I will write that so far in my Murakami reading experience, this writer has an interesting and strange imagination. However, Murakami is a heck of storyteller and his just outside-of-the-borders-of-reality storytelling deserves all the praise and recognition he has received throughout his career.

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is set in a Tokyo suburb where a man named Toru Okada is looking for his wife’s missing cat. Okuda’s search for the missing cat takes him on a journey that connects to Japan’s involvement in World War II, a well from a nearby property, psychic prostitutes, a hyper-perceptive teenage girl, and a powerful politician out to destroy him and his marriage. It seems unlikely how all of these elements could come together in a novel. Murakami’s combination of a matter-of-fact detective fiction style of prose with surrealistic touches brings all of these disparate elements together in six hundred pages of the Wind-up Bird Chronicle. It was the strangest and most brilliant reading experience I’ve had since Kafka’s Metamorphosis.

I’m still decompressing as reader days later after reading The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. I will admit I still don’t know if I have captured the story that Murakami was telling in the book.

Is it about the history of contemporary Japan after World War II and the ramifications of war?

Is it about the connection you think you have to someone you love, but you never truly know the person?

Is it about the power of the imagination and supernatural having a real impact on a person’s everyday life?

Those questions have run through my mind after reading the novel. I believe the Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is about all of things and so much more. If you are Murakami fan and have not read this novel…..please do. I’m not sure this is the book for newcomers to his work. I would recommend Norwegian Wood or Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage for newcomers or my favorite, A Wild Sheep Chase. The Wind-up Bird Chronicle is a book I will remember for a long time and that’s one of the best things you can say after reading a novel. ( )
  kammbiamh | Mar 25, 2018 |
I have a strange feeling after finishing this book. After 60% I struggled a bit through it and I skipped some parts. It wasn't that bad and of course it was wisely written but I just lost my interest when I got close to the ending of it. ( )
  Denicbt | Feb 5, 2018 |
Not easy to describe or summarize. An extremely spontaneous plot that doesn't bother to explain the connections and causal relationships between events and people. Very entertaining in parts, dull in others, but overall very rewarding. One of those rare books that encourages a re-reading immediately upon completion. ( )
  Algybama | Jan 26, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 257 (next | show all)
By the book's midway point, the novelist-juggler has tossed so many balls into the air that he inevitably misses a few on the way down. Visionary artists aren't always neat: who reads Kafka for his tight construction? In ''The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle'' Murakami has written a bold and generous book, and one that would have lost a great deal by being tidied up.
 
Mr. Murakami seems to have tried to write a book with the esthetic heft and vision of, say, Don DeLillo's ''Underworld'' or Salman Rushdie's ''The Moor's Last Sigh,'' he is only intermittently successful. ''Wind-Up Bird'' has some powerful scenes of antic comedy and some shattering scenes of historical power, but such moments do not add up to a satisfying, fully fashioned novel. In trying to depict a fragmented, chaotic and ultimately unknowable world, Mr. Murakami has written a fragmentary and chaotic book.
 

» Add other authors (33 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Haruki Murakamiprimary authorall editionscalculated
Haughton, RichardCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rubin, JayTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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When the phone rang I was in the kitchen, boiling a potful of spaghetti and whistling along with an FM broadcast of the overture to Rossini's The Thieving Magpie, which has to be the perfect music for cooking pasta.
Quotations
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
«Ah, così lei ama la letteratura! – mi avrebbero detto, – anch'io. Da giovane ho letto parecchio». Per loro la letteratura era qualcosa che si leggeva da giovani. Come in primavera si colgono le fragole, e in autunno si vendemmia.
«Io ho solo sedici anni, e il mondo non lo conosco ancora bene, ma una cosa sola posso affermare con sicurezza: se io sono pessimista, un adulto che non lo sia, in questo mondo, è proprio un cretino».
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Toru Okada lever et yderst stilfærdigt liv med sin kone Kumiko i Japan. Han har sagt sit arbejde op og går egentlig bare hjemme og passer kat. Toru Okadas kone arbejder som redaktør på et forlag og den ene dag følger hurtigt den anden.

Lige indtil alting ændrer sig. I "Trækopfuglens krønike" kan du læse, hvordan alting falder sammen om ørene på Toru Okada, da katten og herefter konen forsvinder sporløst. Og hertil hvordan det hele bliver endnu mere forvirrende, da Toru Okada modtager mystiske opkald af mindst så mystiske mennesker.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679775439, Paperback)

Bad things come in threes for Toru Okada. He loses his job, his cat disappears, and then his wife fails to return from work. His search for his wife (and his cat) introduces him to a bizarre collection of characters, including two psychic sisters, a possibly unbalanced teenager, an old soldier who witnessed the massacres on the Chinese mainland at the beginning of the Second World War, and a very shady politician.

Haruki Murakami is a master of subtly disturbing prose. Mundane events throb with menace, while the bizarre is accepted without comment. Meaning always seems to be just out of reach, for the reader as well as for the characters, yet one is drawn inexorably into a mystery that may have no solution. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is an extended meditation on themes that appear throughout Murakami's earlier work. The tropes of popular culture, movies, music, detective stories, combine to create a work that explores both the surface and the hidden depths of Japanese society at the end of the 20th century.

If it were possible to isolate one theme in The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, that theme would be responsibility. The atrocities committed by the Japanese army in China keep rising to the surface like a repressed memory, and Toru Okada himself is compelled by events to take responsibility for his actions and struggle with his essentially passive nature. If Toru is supposed to be a Japanese Everyman, steeped as he is in Western popular culture and ignorant of the secret history of his own nation, this novel paints a bleak picture. Like the winding up of the titular bird, Murakami slowly twists the gossamer threads of his story into something of considerable weight. --Simon Leake

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:47 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Having quit his job, Toru Okada is enjoying a pleasant stint as a "house husband", listening to music and arranging the dry cleaning and doing the cooking - until his cat goes missing, his wife becomes distant and begins acting strangely, and he starts meeting enigmatic people with fantastic life stories. They involve him in a world of psychics, shared dreams, out-of-body experiences, and shaman-like powers, and tell him stories from Japan's war in Manchuria, about espionage on the border with Mongolia, the battle of Nomonhan, the killing of the animals in Hsin-ching's zoo, and the fate of Japanese prisoners-of-war in the Soviet camps in Siberia.… (more)

» see all 7 descriptions

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