Thursday, November 14, 2013

Norwegian Wood

Not the song, but the book by Haruki Murakami
It does however, get its title from the song that the protagonists in the book loved.

I can't say whether I like it or I don't. I can see why it makes a beautiful movie. It can be pictured in some setting of natural beauty in the snow and in the mountains, intertwined with the confusion of Tokyo and a sweet love story under the shadow of a tragic love story. Sometimes I would think of the book as utterly hopeless with 4 characters having committed suicide. It's depressing and I can't understand what could be haunting all these people who kill themselves for no reason as it seems. I think it should never be read by anyone under 25, or may be 35 or may be anyone. It's like the opposite of Veronica decides to die, which I think should be prescribed reading for teenagers. And then I again, I love the way the book flows in and out. It isn't the story, it isn't the writing. But it leaves you with a feeling that is the essence of any book. I read books to teleport into a different world, and this book accomplishes it like it's the most natural thing to do. The writing style, may be because of the translation, is a bit off. I read the whole book and in my mind were people all aged 30 to 35 years old. None of them felt 20, not even Midori. Midori seemed rather childish yet in her early thirties. Is it possible that the author realised this and added a prologue to say the story is actually told by a man in his 50s or 60s talking about when he was 20? Possibly. Interestingly, the back drop of the story is Tokyo in the 1960s with students brewing revolutionary ideas. And yet they are students in their early 20s like Nagasawa, a character so common these days with his ambition and drive and no real meaning. And those not in the inner circle either gape in awe or mock at their hollowness. Like people, everywhere. 

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