Japanese author Haruki Murakami makes cats speak

“You’re never really done for, as long as you’ve got a good story and someone to tell it to,” says the trumpet player Max in one of my favorite movies of all time The legend of 1900.

Murakami: a man with a very surreal phantasy. (pic by wikipedia)

I love listening to stories. I believe that people who dare to use phantasy and playfulness to tell an exciting, funny or interesting story are generally passionate people.

I believe that the Japanese writer Haruki Murakami is one of these people.

The first story I came across was On seeing the 100% perfect girl one beautiful April morning – which then seemed to me like the title of a poem itself.

But then the deep feelings, the “ifs” and “could haves” in that story really touched me. Although I have to say this is one of his better short stories.

Everything is possible

Then I moved on to Kafka on the Shore. Honestly, because at first I thought it would be about Franz Kafka (but it is not).

I must say that I have rarely read such a real and surreal book.

To me it was rather easy to identify with the 15-year-old Kafka how goes through a lot of teenage stuff.

But the use of music (mostly Prince and Kim Wilde but also a lot of classical music (read more about the music here)) in order to convey a certain mood or to underline certain thoughts fascinated me even more.

Of course the crazy stuff like talking cats and leech-rain is pretty confusing and impressive, too.

Too crazy for some

Jonathan Romney writes in the British Independent that he has “never been able to get any purchase on Murakami’s book, intellectually or emotionally”.

Romney thinks that Murakami makes feelings much more dramatic and complicated than they are or should be.

But when you are 15 these things might as well seem giant and very scary to you.

On the other hand Romney says about the newly released screen adaption of Norwegian Wood that it is “a visually exquisite film, in its abstract way”.

And I think this holds true for much of Murakami’s writing too: It is shy, fragile, confused, detached from this world and sometimes abstract.

But it motivates your mind to leave its comfort zone and imagine unimaginable things.

This blog was inspired by Katie Leversuch asking for favorite authors.

Watch the trailer to Norwegian Wood (with English subtitels):

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