Gregory Gay's Reviews > 1Q84

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
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's review
Nov 17, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: scifi, japan, surreal, modern-fantasy, read-in-2011
Read from November 17 to December 13, 2011

1Q84 is a big book - not just in page count, but in terms of content. It's a challenging book to get through, and sometimes a bit dense, but there's really nothing like it out there.

1Q84 is full of the surreal, modern fantasy that Murakami is so good at, presenting an alternate version of 1984 quite similar to the real world, but twisted and cracked at the seams. The book also tells a wonderful, beautiful, and sometimes tragic love story that is far deeper than anything in the "Twilight"s of the world. Tengo and Aomame don't even reunite until the very end, but their love story - stretching across both Japan and two universes - definitely had me rooting for them.

It isn't Murakami's best, but it's definitely a good example of his work. The writing is oddly repetitive at times, restating the same thing in successive paragraphs or lines of dialogue. The ideas here aren't completely original, and are done a bit better in a couple of his past works (the surreal alternate worlds in Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, the romance in Norwegian Wood). Still, I was sucked in deep, and enjoyed it until the very end. Definitely worth a read.

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Reading Progress

12/01/2011 page 350
38.0% "This book is great, but wow - it is one hell of a tome. I'd be done with most books by the 350 page point, but in 1Q84, the plot is just now heating up."
12/12/2011 page 780
84.0% "Great book. Murakami's writing style has changed a bit since his last outing, and that definitely hurts a bit, but he is still great at sucking in the reader and immersing them in these incredible, surreal worlds. Almost to the finish line!"

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