The Forbidden Worlds of Haruki Murakami
Haruki Murakami is a genre unto himself. His stories combine classic narratives like love stories, bonds of friendship, and the loss of either with fantastic elements and nebulous otherworldly influences that heighten, rather than detract from the emotional engagement of the reader and the protagonist. His singular voice and style has made him both famous and a subject of frequent literary study.
The Forbidden Worlds of Haruki Murakami is Strecher’s second book dedicated to Murakami’s works, and focuses extensively on Murakami’s magical realist narrative style. Whether it’s “the other world” that recurs in several Murakami novels, his employment of mythological elements, or his movement into literary journalism with the Underground books, Strecher plumbs the depths of Murakami’s themes and variations to offer some wonderful, thoughtful insight into a unique voice in modern fiction.
Spanning Murakami’s entire career, from his earliest works to the recently published Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, Strecher’s analysis is topnotch, with only slight tinges of fawning fanboyism to color his insights. Both long-time Murakami readers and newcomers to his work will find unexpected connections and worthwhile points of discussion awaiting them here.
Matthew Carl Strecher
Univ Of Minnesota Press