More Murakami please! For the first time in genre X history we returned to an author and most everyone in attendance agreed that Murakami was a worthy choice for this distinction. Way back in 2008 genre X discussed The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, but for this month’s selection we discussed Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of The World.
There’s so much to discuss with Murakami, and in particular this book – shadows, the INKlings, unicorn skulls that glow, sound-removal technology. We jumped right in to gather everyone’s thoughts on if or how the Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of The World were connected, re-describing the processes of shuffling and losing your mind to unicorns, and if anyone understood the diagrams of consciousness.
A number of people at the discussion were huge Murakami fans and were vocal in their admiration for the imaginative author. While not everyone was at a Murakami super-fan level, almost everyone agreed that they enjoyed the trippy journey Murakami took us on, unicorn skulls, paperclips, and all.
Trying to define a Murakami book seemed to be the most difficult task; not quite science fiction, not quite cyberpunk, but not a straight thriller or simple novel either. It was pointed out that most characters seemed two-dimensional, and it could not be characterized as character driven, but did not seem quite plot driven either. One member remarked that it was “concept driven”. However you define it, everyone agreed that it is a highly discussible book, and that Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of the World was more enjoyable as a read because we knew there would be a discussion at the end.
We will be looking forward to our next discussion too, of Zone One by Colson Whitehead at 8pm at Molly Malone’s on Tuesday, October 22.