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June 2018: Magical Realism > Dance Dance Dance by Haruki Murakami

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message 1: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments 3 stars
Dance Dance Dance is the first 4th book in the Rat Series so is one of Murakmi's earlier books. It continues past the third story although can be read as a standalone book too. Murakami's books are usually apolitical but this novel contains commentary on capitalism and consumerism. The plot centers around the unnamed male from the prior 3 books. This time he is searching for a women he had previously dated. He dreams that she is calling out to him and crying for him. The search takes him on a journey where he encounters a whole host of characters.

I didn't love this one. It was probably my least favorite of the series. I found the sections on capitalism (the more direct sections) to be fairly tedious. I also found his portrayal of women to be fairly irritating (while this has bothered me in prior books, it was pretty obvious here). Women characters are mainly (but not all) side characters and often relevant only in their sexual relationship with the characters (three of the women are prostitutes). The exception is a 13-year old girl whom the narrator befriends. Honestly, I find it a tad creepy that the 34 year old narrator becomes so close to this 13 year old and often describes her as someone he'd fall in love with if he was 15 and goes on and on about how beautiful she is.

Anyway, I did like the pacing and some of the story elements. The magical/surrealist elements are pretty mild in this book. Overall it was okay but nothing amazing.

message 2: by Idit (new)

Idit | 1028 comments I have it on my shelf at home and have been hesitating for years. I think you are making case for a guilt-free goodbye...

His only book I read was South of the Boarder, West of the Sun which everyone raved about around me, and I didn’t get it. Very lukewarm for me.

Was there any of his that you loved?

message 3: by Jen (new)

Jen | 1545 comments Yes, I have loved many of them. My favorite is windup bird chronicles but I also really liked Sputnik Sweetheart, Norwegian Wood, Colorless..., and 1Q84. Norwegian Wood is a good place to start since it’s not quite as weird as other books

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