‘1Q84: Book 3’, Haruki Murakami

I have also managed to finish the series by Haruki Murakami, ‘1Q84’ (serialized novel sounds better, maybe?). I found the timing to be very good since he has now published a new novel (only in Japanese thus far, I believe, but my interest in reading it has soared due to ‘1Q84’). But, before that, where do we go from the multiple threads that Books 1 and 2 took us to?

“Well, with facts what’s important is their weight and accuracy. Warmth is secondary.”
— Murakami, Haruki (2011-10-25). 1Q84: Book 3 (p. 97). Random House UK. Kindle Edition.

I found that I enjoyed Book 3 somewhat more. Now, this could have simply been the unraveling of all of the different threads and the conjoined ending that the author devised for this mysterious world, but I would also like to think that it was something more sublime. After all, the sense of mystery is there as long as we are in 1Q84. The two moons, and the people who see things that shouldn’t exist.

Maybe I was most surprised by the author bringing Ushikawa-san into the point of view character list. What I do know is that if I didn’t like Ushikawa very much in the first two volumes, then here he was brilliant. I enjoyed his chapters, and I wanted to know more of what went on in his mind. How his work got done meant so much (both to him and to me) and Mr Murakami brought that across very ably — I would probably not be lying if I said that Ushikawa turned out to be my favourite character in the entirety of ‘1Q84’.

Obviously, there is something appealing about the simplicity of Tengo and the charms of Aomame and the variety of lesser characters we see (including Komatsu, Tamaru and Fuka-Eri), but Ushikawa’s special. He brings the mystery alive. He makes the mystery a mystery. And then there is the moment when he understands that there is more in this world than just a single moon…

There is very little else to be said without revealing too much of what goes on — and though it did take me a while to read (for some reason I seem to read Mr Murakami very slowly), there is plenty here that does happen, so I would rather not ruin anything with further spoilers.

Read the book, feel the book. It is worth it.

“To rephrase Tolstoy’s famous line, all happiness is alike, but each pain is painful in its own way.”
— Murakami, Haruki (2011-10-25). 1Q84: Book 3 (p. 303). Random House UK. Kindle Edition.

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