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The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki…
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The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle (original 1997; edition 1997)

by Haruki Murakami, Jay Rubin (Translator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
12,591244190 (4.22)2 / 733
Member:Nirmala.Chandrasiri
Title:The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
Authors:Haruki Murakami
Other authors:Jay Rubin (Translator)
Info:KNOPF. (1997), Edition: Reprinted Edition, Paperback, 611 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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Work details

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami (1997)

Recently added bythebigidea, smichaelwilson, todolos, private library, Jernsaksa, e-zReader, Ritinha_
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English (216)  Dutch (6)  Danish (4)  French (4)  Swedish (4)  Spanish (4)  Italian (2)  Norwegian (1)  Catalan (1)  Hebrew (1)  German (1)  All languages (244)
Showing 1-5 of 216 (next | show all)
An intriguing mystery with an eclectic and fun voice. For a story that mostly took place in a dream, in a war and in a well it's scope is contained, and I wouldn't say this book is sprawling in any sense. There were quite a few moments that I thought went on too long but I admire the the lengths at which the characters would speak or listen on the subjects of seeming regularity and Murukami's nonchalance in letting them ramble. ( )
  Braden_Timss | Aug 12, 2015 |
I had heard mixed reviews about this book. It is very strange, but I think I liked it. Lots of parts made me laugh, and lots of parts made me think. I am glad that I knew going into it that there wouldn't be much resolution and lots of it wouldn't make any sense. I would consider giving the book four stars, but I probably wouldn't recommend it to most people. ( )
  klburnside | Aug 11, 2015 |
Definitely 5 stars. This book was recommended to me by a newer friend who seems to have an uncanny knack for knowing which books I will simply love. "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle" definitely didn't fail to disappoint.
I'm not sure what it was about this book that captivated me so (okay it was very nearly everything), but I was engrossed from the first chapter.

Not something I could recommend to just anybody, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
( )
  mkclane | Jul 31, 2015 |
I've read this before a while ago, and think this re-read was a little too close to 1Q84, a bit too much Murakami too close together. His books can be quite similar and one character (Ushikawa) even pops up in both books. Having said that I do like his writing style, it's such a strange yet familiar world to inhabit for a while. I think this book has something serious to say about the war but I'm not sure exactly what. ( )
  AlisonSakai | Jul 13, 2015 |
Well, I like this book, but I gave it 4stars because I enjoyed Kafka On The Shore more. It was more gripping. This novel remains a good piece written by the master ( )
  Mohamed80 | Jul 11, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 216 (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 (37 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Haruki Murakamiprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Haughton, RichardCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rubin, JayTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
When the phone rang I was in the kitchen, boiling a potful of spaghetti and whistling along to an FM broadcast of the overture to Rossini's The Thieving Magpie, which has to be the perfect music for cooking pasta.
Quotations
He normally stayed shut up in the small office he had there, but every now and then he would leave the door ajar, and I was able to observe him at work--not without a certain guilty sense of invading someone’s privacy. He and his computer seemed to be moving together in an almost erotic union. After a burst of strokes on the keyboard, he would gaze at the screen, his mouth twisted in apparent dissatisfaction or curled with the suggestion of a smile. Sometimes he seemed deep in thought as he touched one key, then another, then another; and sometimes he ran his fingers over the keys with all the energy of a pianist playing a Liszt etude. As he engaged in silent conversation with his machine, he seemed to be peering through the screen of his monitor into another world, with which he shared a special intimacy. I couldn’t help but feel that reality resided for him not so much in the earthly world but in his subterranean labyrinth.
. . . a person's destiny is something you look back at after it's past, not something you see in advance.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please do not combine with Volume 1 or 2 of the 2-volume edition.
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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 4 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)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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