11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Dissociated even for a Murakami.,
By A Customer
This review is from: Sputnik Sweetheart (Panther) (Paperback)
If you're looking for a novel that hinges on the unbridgeable spaces between people, that encompasses different types of isolation and loneliness then this is definitely worth a try.
However for me the idea of it being a "love" story is definitely misleading. K, the main narrator, is a mildly interesting voice at his best when dwelling on his unrequited feelings and observations of Samire at the start of the book. And yet the overwhelming impression through 90% of the novel is not of love but more an idealised sexual obsession.
This is definitely how I came to view the relationship between Samire and her object of desire, the mysterious Miu. And that's where it all went a bit muddled. Once Samire meets Miu and starts to obsess over her she seems to lose dimension as a character. In fact, both Samire and Miu appear to become very one dimensional the more time they spend in each other's company. Whether this is a deliberate effect of implying how a lover can become so single-minded that they willingly submerge and tailor their personality, or just an outbreak of some rather dull writing is down to an individual's view.
Samire, Miu and K are all rather coldly isolated characters for different reasons but they just didn't inspire interest or empathy to draw me into their self-contained existences. A melange of ideas and recognisable traits run through the novel but in comparison to his other books this just doesn't have enough to it to be truly memorable.