Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage Paperback – 2 Jul 2015
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"A naturalistic coming-of-age story… sprinkled with strange images and written in a hauntingly mournful key" (Guardian)
"[Murakmi’s] elegant, frugal prose creates a tale of courage and hope as Tsukuru tries to unlock the secrets of his past" (Stylist)
"Critics have variously likened Murakami to Raymond Carver, Raymond Chandler, Arthur C Clarke, Don DeLillo, Philip K Dick, Bret Easton Ellis and Thomas Pynchon – a roster so ill-assorted to suggest he is in fact an original" (New York Times)
"A rich and even brilliant piece of work… Genuinely resonant and satisfying" (James Walton Spectator)
"This is a book for both the new and experienced reader....[it] reveals another side of Murakami, one not so easy to pin down. Incurably restive, ambiguous and valiantly struggling toward a new level of maturation" (Patti Smith New York Times)
A mesmerising mystery story about friendship from the internationally bestselling author of Norwegian WoodSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
As so often with Murakami this book deals with loneliness, redemption, music, food, love and sex. It is compelling, beautiful and utterly captivating.
One of Murakami's best, in my opinion
The book opens rather depressingly with Tsukuru Tazaki full of despair as he has no friends. Back in his youth he was one of a group of five friends who were inseparable, but one day the other four ostracised Tsukuru apparently for no reason. He knew that the other four (two girls and two boys) had colours in their names whilst his did not, but surely that couldn't be the reason? He attempts to contact one of his friends to find out more but they simply tell him that he knows the reason already and shouldn't contact them again.
Years later he is on the verge of entering into a relationship but the woman he meets tells him he has issues, and that he needs to find the root cause. He explains about his circle of friends and his isolation from them, and she tells him that he needs to find out why they pushed him out, and that only by doing this will she continue with their relationship. So Tsukuru sets out to contact his old friends and find out the truth.
In many ways it is similar to his earlier work such as "Norwegian Wood", as this is an easy book to read and has a similarly cold atmosphere to it, almost a sterility. It's a bit of a page turner too, especially when Tsukuru starts to find things out, although it is a little repetitive as the latter half of the book is essentially a series of meetings and conversations.Read more ›
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage follows a more straightforward story, much akin to Norwegian Wood, leaving behind the more bizarre elements such as parallel lives and other quirks found in previous works like Kafka on the Shore or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
The story follows 36 year-old Tsukuru Tazaki's quest to track down his old high school friends, who ostracised him from their close-knit group sixteen years earlier, for reasons he never understood. In order to move on at this stage in his life, Tazaki realises he needs to find out what happened. Relationships, emotions and the constant reminder of human fragility are at the core of this story, which is also quite brutal in places.
Along the way, we deal with recurring erotic dreams, sex, rape, murder and ultimately, mental health issues; a subject often addressed in Murakami's work. Other familiarities include Cutty Sark whiskey, plenty of meals, classical music and Japanese train stations, which form a large part of the backdrop to this story, as Tazaki's quest takes him from Tokyo to Finland.
As ever, the characters are intimately detailed, sensual deeply thought out – arguably Murakami's greatest strength as a writer is his ability to create fascinating, emotive and absorbing characters, and that's definitely the case here. The English translation clearly keeps the poetry of the writing and vivid visuals and ideas intact.
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki was certainly worth the wait, and as always leaves you yearning for more. Once you've been sucked into Murakami's literary world, it's difficult to leave. Plus, you don't really want to.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A very thoughtful and interesting book. Without too many dramatic twists and turns it captures the readers attention and brings them in. Read morePublished 1 day ago by Kirsty
I couldn't believe this was as long as it was after I finished. It felt like a Novella.Published 7 days ago by Adrian Martin
I too was a friendless young man, so this book resonated strongly with me. However as the story unfolds and Tazaki makes his courageous pilgrimage so much is explained and... Read morePublished 22 days ago by Robert Ashton
Favourite book so far (and I don't just mean those written by murokami)Published 1 month ago by Kazuya Mishima
I am genuinely addicted to Murakami despite occasional frustrations (often caused by the fact that you have to read carefully or you can miss things, here including the point of... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Simon R..
Enjoyable, thought provoking, but ultimately unfulfilling.Published 1 month ago by Dawn Amber Harvey