Translated from the Japanese by Philip Gabriel
Tsukuru Tazaki had four best friends at school. By chance all of their names contained a colour. The two boys were called Akamatsu, meaning ‘red pine’, and Oumi, ‘blue sea’, while the girls’ names were Shirane, ‘white root’, and Kurono, ‘black field’. Tazaki was the only last name with no colour in it.
One day Tsukuru Tazaki’s friends announced that they didn’t want to see him, or talk to him, ever again.
Since that day Tsukuru has been floating through life, unable to form intimate connections with anyone. But then he meets Sara, who tells him that the time has come to find out what happened all those years ago.
About the Author
Haruki Murakami is the author of many novels as well as short stories and non-fiction. His books include Norwegian Wood, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Kafka on the Shore, 1Q84, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running and The Strange Library. His work has been translated into more than 50 languages, and the most recent of his many international honours is the Jerusalem Prize.
One day, Tsukuru Tazaki wakes up to find his circle of friends have dropped him without explanation. Though Tsukuru accepts their decision it never the less has a profound impact on his life. When a woman named Sara enters his life she begins to push Tsukuru to get some resolution from his old classmates. What is revealed in this journey into the past is a series of unnecessary misunderstandings. The reader may not get the clear end they are looking for but this might just be Murakami’s point. In life, sometimes there is not an easy resolution to conflicts in relationships.
It is a novel about love, friendship and the need for catharsis that we sometimes need to seek for in the past in order to be able to move onto the future. Murakami’s successful blending of parallel worlds is always a pleaseure to read.