- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; New Ed edition (1 Jun. 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0099448572
- ISBN-13: 978-0099448570
- Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 1.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,096 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
South of the Border, West of the Sun Paperback – 1 Jun 2000
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In South of the Border, West of the Sun the arc of an average man's life from childhood to middle age with its attendant rhythms of success and disappointment becomes the kind of exquisite literary conundrum that is Haruki Murakami's trademark. The plot is simple: Hajime meets and falls in love with a girl in elementary school but loses touch with her when his family moves to another town. He drifts through high school, college and his 20s before marrying and settling into a career as a successful bar owner. Then his childhood sweetheart returns weighed down with secrets:
"When I went back into the bar, a glass and ashtray remained where she had been. A couple of lightly crushed cigarette butts were lined up in the ashtray, a faint trace of lipstick on each. I sat down and closed my eyes. Echoes of music faded away, leaving me alone. In that gentle darkness, the rain continued to fall without a sound".Murakami eschews the fantastic elements that appear in many of his other novels and stories, and readers hoping for a glimpse of the "Sheep Man" will be disappointed. Yet South of the Border, West of the Sun is as rich and mysterious as anything he has written. It is above all a complex, moving and honest meditation on the nature of love distilled into a work with the crystal clarity of a short story. A Nat King Cole song, a figure on a crowded street, a face pressed against a car window, a handful of ashes drifting down a river to the sea are woven together into a story that refuses to arrive at a simple conclusion. The classic love triangle may seem like a hackneyed theme for a writer as talented as Murakami but in his quietly dazzling way he bends us to his own unique geometry. --Simon Leake, Amazon.com --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.
"A story of love in a cool climate, intensely romantic and weepily beautiful...it is startlingly different: a true original" (Guardian)
"Casablanca remade Japanese style...It is dream-like writing, laden with scenes which have the radiance of a poem" (The Times)
"This wise and beautiful book is full of hidden truths" (New York Times)
"This book aches...an eloquent treatise on the vertiginous, irrational powers of love and desire" (Independent on Sunday)
"Impressively written and structured... Above all, the novel is memorable for its unflinchingly extreme treatment of romantic love" (Times Literary Supplement)
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Top Customer Reviews
Only 200 or so pages, this book is one of the most touching love stories I have ever read, although at no point does it become overly sentimental.It mixes together fate, love, duty and choice and one man's dilemma between the life he knows and the love he longs for since his childhood.
Enigmatic, beautifully written and utterly brilliant.
Ultimately, Hajime makes a decision, and the tale is resolved. There's not really much more to the story than that; however it is Murakami's dreamy and nebulous prose, and the haunting feel of this novel, that lifts it out of the ordinary and makes it such a compelling read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I first discovered Murakami last year. I purchased Norwegian Wood. SOTB,WOTS is my 9th foray into the magical prose of the Japanese genius. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Aiden Power
Before this I had read one Murakami book, the hardback version of Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, which I had found surprisingly interesting; this 'surprise'... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Charlotte
A beautifully written piece of literature. A very pleasing read, takes you away.Published 11 months ago by Ken Reno
I fell in love with Murakami’s writing when I read After Dark earlier this year for the 2016 Popsugar Reading Challenge. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Pamela Scott
This is yet another delicious, well crafted piece of fiction from the Japanese master, bursting with all the hallmarks of Murakami that make his stories so addictive. Read morePublished 14 months ago by keen reader