Posted by: Ele Quigan | January 26, 2011

Norwegian Wood (ノルウェイの森, Noruwei no Mori) By Haruki Murakami

I’ve always seen Murakami books on lonely shelves. Recommended from the Waterstones in Oxford st, I thought I should give this a try. I’m also a sucker for a good cover so I was absolutely drawn in by the gorgeous main movie image…

Norwegian Wood - thanks wsj

Norwegian Wood - thanks wsj

this book is stark, it’s harsh, but yet in some strange way it’s absolutely glorious. It’s about growing up in Japan in the 60’s, around characters that are in some senses almost obscene, until you reflect on your own 18/19/20’s and realise that how much of it could reflect in your own self.

It’s not really about protests, or a thematic narrative about what else was happening during this changing time across the world, but more of a snapshot of lives, with pain showing through as raw as a serrated cut that thunders through the novel, leaving me almost despairing at the end.

It reminded me of Jodi Picoult’s ‘The Pact’ or almost any novel covering stressful interpersonal teenage relationships, but seemed to strike a deeper chord.

The movie does look amazing, but I think I’ll pass, as it will just be too sad.


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