HARUKI MURAKAMI SPUTNIK SWEETHEART PDF

His father was the son of a Buddhist priest, [10] and his mother is the daughter of an Osaka merchant. His first job was at a record store. Shortly before finishing his studies, Murakami opened a coffee house and jazz bar, Peter Cat, in Kokubunji, Tokyo , which he ran with his wife, [16] from to I was just one of those ordinary people.

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Clunky writing, glaring credibility gaps, predictable storylines - all are a cinch to detect, dissect and generally rail against. All too rarely, a different sort of novel altogether comes along. One that works - that, yes, entertains, captivates and energises you, the reader - but, when you try to define its magic, pin down its themes or even grasp its story, just slithers away out of reach.

How to begin to describe what it is or does? K, the narrator, is a sober, solitary, kind and intelligent young primary-school teacher in Tokyo. Sumire has dropped out of college and is bent on becoming a novelist. She smokes too much, clumps around in rough workboots and "an oversized herringbone coat from a second-hand shop" and wants to be a character in a Kerouac novel - "wild, cool, dissolute".

Sumire and K are close, close friends - but platonic ones. In fact, Sumire believes she has fallen truly in love for the first time, with an enigmatic older woman called Miu who has given her a job in her wine company. Always has been, always will be. He drops everything and goes. Murakami has given us a work so much larger and more pungent than the sum of its parts. His prose seems at first glance attractively lively, readable - comic, even.

There are endless crunchy descriptions, perkily visceral phrases and definitions. The characters are impeccably realised; recognisable, modern, real. Reality resembles "a cardigan with the buttons done up wrong"; when K arrives on the island, he tastes "the kind of air that felt like if you breathed it in, your lungs would be dyed the same shade of blue".

But go in further, relax and slide beneath that prose, and the result is like peeking over the edge of a precipice: dizzying and rather frightening. This is, I think, a novel about loneliness and isolation; about the painfully fragmentary nature of our effect upon one another - the terrifying thought that maybe not even real, human love forges connections, that space, time and inexplicable events will always snake their way between ourselves and others.

Though Murakami seems to invite us to join him in a straightforward mystery adventure, he in fact does something much more upsetting. He frees us from his narrative in much the same way that his characters finally shake loose of one another - he sends us spinning, orbiting wildly. In doing so, he surely accomplishes the best, most unnerving job of fiction: to force you to look hard at the parts of yourself you never even suspected were there.

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Sputnik Sweetheart: Summary, Analysis & Themes

Business obligations take the pair to Europe and they eventually decide to relax for awhile on a small, unnamed Greek island. After Sumire suddenly disappears into thin air, our narrator gets a call from a concerned Miu. This is one of the few Murakami novels in which most of the significant points of the plot take place outside Japan. Aside from the small Greek island that the main characters visit, we also learn about a previous experience Miu had in a Swiss town that caused her hair to turn white. There are, however, a few Tokyo locations mentioned in the book that make for an interesting day trip.

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Sputnik Sweetheart Quotes

Clunky writing, glaring credibility gaps, predictable storylines - all are a cinch to detect, dissect and generally rail against. All too rarely, a different sort of novel altogether comes along. One that works - that, yes, entertains, captivates and energises you, the reader - but, when you try to define its magic, pin down its themes or even grasp its story, just slithers away out of reach. How to begin to describe what it is or does? K, the narrator, is a sober, solitary, kind and intelligent young primary-school teacher in Tokyo.

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