J.I.'s Reviews > Dance Dance Dance

Dance Dance Dance by Haruki Murakami
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's review
Dec 17, 2012

bookshelves: read-2008
Read in November, 2008

Something of noir and something of the common man that is not quite so normal that Murakami specializes in so well, this novel leads the reader through the dream world once again.

What is strong in the book is what is typically strong with the author. The sense of individual personalities shining through in a way that comments upon society. Here we speak of "advanced capitalism" and Murakami's reflections on the way that we have shifted from a traditional system, not only economically but emotionally as well. We are in debt but we spend more than ever from expense accounts. This sense of debt and spending bleeds into the characters and the dream world, shaping their actions and their thoughts, making the point all that more strong.

What is weak in this book, like many of his books, are the dropped threads, the events that are connected but who knows how? One could postulate that what happened to some of the characters are subtle, non-direct expressions of this "advanced capitalism," the casualties of "shoveling snow," a phrase unfortunately dropped three quarters of the way through this novel. But that would be cheating. The holes here stand out a little stronger than in his other novels, the characters dropped a little abruptly, the dreams acting just a little inconsistently.

Which is a shame. A stronger ending could have made this novel much stronger, much truer and much more fascinating. It is still intense and interesting, still a wonderful accounting of society and trends, but one that falls a little short of its goals.
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Sumo Chris Interesting. In the Japanese version, the "shoveling snow" phrase is kept until near the end.

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