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Norwegian wood by Haruki Murakami

Norwegian wood (1987)

by Haruki Murakami (Author), Jay Rubin (Translator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,282248249 (3.98)4 / 409
Title:Norwegian wood
Authors:Haruki Murakami (Author)
Other authors:Jay Rubin (Translator)
Info:Amsterdam : Rubinstein; 10 compact discs (12 uur en 45 min.); http://picarta.pica.nl/DB=2.4/PPN?PPN=330751662
Collections:Your library, Gelezen in 2012, Romans

Work details

Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami (1987)

  1. 81
    The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami (philrafferty)
    philrafferty: Murakami's masterwork.
  2. 105
    The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger (hippietrail, Jannes)
    Jannes: Many interesting parallells, and the protagonist of Norwegian Wood compares himself with Holden Caulfield from Catcher on several occations.
  3. 40
    1Q84 Book 1 by Haruki Murakami (jalonsoarevalo)
    jalonsoarevalo: MAravillosa recreación tomando como letmotiv el libro de Orwell 1984
  4. 00
    In Watermelon Sugar by Richard Brautigan (ursula)
    ursula: Murakami is influenced by Brautigan. Both are simple but weird tales of love and life.
  5. 00
    Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald (Lex23)
    Lex23: Both books beautifully describe a difficult relationship between a man and a woman with a psychiatric background
  6. 00
    Socrates In Love by Kyoichi Katayama (alalba)
  7. 11
    1Q84 by Haruki Murakami (Kordo)
  8. 00
    Who is Mr Satoshi? by Jonathan Lee (alzo)

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Showing 1-5 of 191 (next | show all)
#reviewnotareview a.k.a. rambling before i get everything cobbled together:

Okayyy. Hmmm. I need to get my thoughts gathered on this one. Yeah. It wasn't a bad read (there is some really beautiful writing in there) but it was a pretty "???" read for me. Not so much confusing as it was "eh?", "what?", "shiznit fo real?". It's kind of a porn-frames-spliced-into-Disney-movie type of "???" - should it be ignored so that the flowery bits can blossom? Hmm there is a metaphor there somewhere -- about flowers and dirt and manure. (And I suddenly emphatise with Tymbrini annoyance at Terran/human metaphors).

Review pending as I look through the pages I dog-eared and contemplate on whether those bits outweighed the o_O bits. I may only come back to this after I read one or two more Murakami books. *stares@IQ84*
  kephradyx | Jun 20, 2017 |
Little too long. Descriptions about places. Senery. Interesting sexual American in Tokyo and his love fir two women. One hangs her self ( )
  pauler | Jun 6, 2017 |
Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murasaki (translated by Jay Rubin). The first book by Murasaki I've read and (unexpectedly) enjoyed. I've put off reading Murasaki's works for a long time (for reasons I've clean forgotten—probably because many years have passed between then and now). The work lends a peek into a few struggles of life that persist even today (perhaps now, more so) in urbanised societies, and which still remain somewhat tabooed subjects of open discussion in societies obsessed about appearing in total control: issues of mental health, personality disorders, suicide/death, and (in the background) the conflict between the true self/honestly vs. public appearances and societal expectations. The work does contain some somewhat graphic sexual content, so readers who are not comfortable with such content might want to avoid this book. (Then again, don't most books contain some element of sex?). Overall an easy-to-follow and quick read; great for a reflective weekend with many cups of tea/coffee. Postscript: The translator notes, at the end of the book, that Norwegian Wood differs from Murakami's usual works, so if you are unfamiliar with his work and are uncertain whether you will like them, this book may not be an accurate yardstick on which to measure/judge his work/style. #NorwegianWood #HarukiMurakami #TranslatedWorks #AsianLit #ModernLit #Novel #Fiction #AFYReviews #BookReviews ( )
  l_affinity | Apr 18, 2017 |
I don't read other people's reviews before writing my own, but I've got a feeling I'm going to be out on my own here, in that I found this irritating and boring.

It started off OK - in fact I loved Storm Trooper with his obsessive ways, and it was a pity he didn't stick around longer. My high hopes for the rest of the book were quickly dashed as it descended into a mishmash of psychobabble and sex. The narrator, a Japanese student, when he isn't out shagging his way round town with his new friend, is led a merry dance by two capricious women. They are attractive, but of course that's the way of things, as ugly women would never be afforded the latitude to game-play the way they do.

The way the cover is designed and the whole aura around the book - with the snippets of reviews praising the author's writing - make it come across as a serious work of literature, so you feel the gratuitous sex and constant references to genitals and who was "wet" etc etc must be symbolic or high-minded. However for me it was like being trapped in a corner at a party by some pervy guy who constantly makes suggestive comments accompanied by an urbane smile so you don't feel you can complain. ( )
  jayne_charles | Apr 18, 2017 |
"Read by everyone in Japan," Norwegian Wood was an experiment by Murakawi in writing a "straight" story and staying away from the magical fiction that he's better known for. His natural style and intimate character development have a magic all their own in what's been described as a coming of age love story.

It begins in retrospect, from the point of view of a 37 year old man reflecting on past relationships as a 20-something in college. It quickly moves to the first person of the story teller, as his relationships build and some fall away. It's as much a story of love as it a story of introspection and self-discovery.

There is a lot of loss as the story progresses, but the reader will find something to hope for as well. At times, there are graphic scenes of intimacy, but they don't overwhelm the story. A great read and another way to connect with more contemporary Japanese culture. ( )
  traumleben | Feb 14, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 191 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (56 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Haruki Murakamiprimary authorall editionscalculated
Elbrich FennemaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nolla, AlbertTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Porta, LourdesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rubin, JayTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Many Fêtes
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I was 37 then, strapped in my seat as the huge 747 plunged through dense cloud cover on approach to Hamburg airport.
Eu tinha trinta e sete anos e viajava, de cinto posto, no meu lugar enquanto o enorme 747 mergulhava através de uma densa cobertura de nuvens a aproximar-se do aeroporto de Hamburgo.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375704027, Paperback)

In 1987, when Norwegian Wood was first published in Japan, it promptly sold more than 4 million copies and transformed Haruki Murakami into a pop-culture icon. The horrified author fled his native land for Europe and the United States, returning only in 1995, by which time the celebrity spotlight had found some fresher targets. And now he's finally authorized a translation for the English-speaking audience, turning to the estimable Jay Rubin, who did a fine job with his big-canvas production The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Readers of Murakami's later work will discover an affecting if atypical novel, and while the author himself has denied the book's autobiographical import--"If I had simply written the literal truth of my own life, the novel would have been no more than fifteen pages long"--it's hard not to read as at least a partial portrait of the artist as a young man.

Norwegian Wood is a simple coming-of-age tale, primarily set in 1969-70, when the author was attending university. The political upheavals and student strikes of the period form the novel's backdrop. But the focus here is the young Watanabe's love affairs, and the pain and pleasure and attendant losses of growing up. The collapse of a romance (and this is one among many!) leaves him in a metaphysical shambles:

I read Naoko's letter again and again, and each time I read it I would be filled with the same unbearable sadness I used to feel whenever Naoko stared into my eyes. I had no way to deal with it, no place I could take it to or hide it away. Like the wind passing over my body, it had neither shape nor weight, nor could I wrap myself in it.
This account of a young man's sentimental education sometimes reads like a cross between Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar and Stephen Vizinczey's In Praise of Older Women. It is less complex and perhaps ultimately less satisfying than Murakami's other, more allegorical work. Still, Norwegian Wood captures the huge expectation of youth--and of this particular time in history--for the future and for the place of love in it. It is also a work saturated with sadness, an emotion that can sometimes cripple a novel but which here merely underscores its youthful poignancy. --Mark Thwaite

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:09 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

This stunning and elegiac novel by the author of the internationally acclaimed Wind-Up Bird Chronicle has sold over 4 million copies in Japan and is now available to American audiences for the first time. It is sure to be a literary event. Toru, a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before. Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there, but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable. As she retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman."-- Cover.… (more)

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