By Haruki Murakami

A quick, smooth novel of encounters set in Tokyo in the course of the witching hours among dead night and sunrise, and each bit as gripping as Haruki Murakami’s masterworks The Wind-Up chook Chronicle and Kafka at the Shore.

At its heart are sisters—Eri, a manner version snoozing her method into oblivion, and Mari, a tender pupil quickly led from solitary analyzing at an nameless Denny’s towards humans whose lives are noticeably alien to her personal: a jazz trombonist who claims they’ve met earlier than, a burly lady “love hotel” supervisor and her maid employees, and a chinese language prostitute savagely brutalized through a businessman. those “night people” are haunted by way of secrets and techniques and desires that draw them jointly extra powerfully than the differing conditions that will preserve them aside, and it quickly turns into transparent that Eri’s slumber—mysteriously tied to the businessman stricken by the mark of his crime—will both restoration or annihilate her.

After darkish
moves from enthralling drama to metaphysical hypothesis, interweaving time and house in addition to reminiscence and standpoint right into a seamless exploration of human agency—the interaction among self-expression and empathy, among the ability of commentary and the scope of compassion and love. Murakami’s trademark humor, mental perception, and snatch of spirit and morality are the following distilled with a rare, harmonious mastery.

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A brown leather shoulder bag rests on the seat next to her. It bulges as if its contents had been thrown in on the spur of the moment. She reaches out at regular intervals and brings the coffee cup to her mouth, but she doesn’t appear to be enjoying the flavor. She drinks because she has a cup of coffee in front of her: that is her role as a customer. At odd moments, she puts a cigarette between her lips and lights it with a plastic lighter. She narrows her eyes, releases an easy puff of smoke into the air, puts the cigarette into the ashtray, and then, as if to soothe an approaching headache, she strokes her temples with her fingertips.

I borrowed money from my parents, bought a used instrument, and joined the school band. Then in high school I started doing different stuff with bands. At first I was backing up a rock band, sort of like the old Tower of Power. ” Mari shakes her head. “It doesn’t matter,” he says. “Anyhow, that’s what I used to do, but now I’m purely into plain, simple jazz. ” The waitress comes to refill his water glass, but he waves her off. He glances at his watch. ” Mari says nothing. Her face says, Nobody’s stopping you.

Yes, the TV should, in fact, be dead. It should, in fact, be cold and hard as it presides over the silence of midnight. Logically. Theoretically. But it is not dead. Scan lines appear, flicker, break up, and vanish. Then the lines come to the surface of the screen again. The faint crackling continues without letup. Eventually the screen begins to display something. An image begins taking shape. Soon, however, it becomes diagonally deformed, like italics, and disappears like a flame blown out. Then the whole process starts again.

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