Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

4.13 (126,769 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 
4.13 (126,769 ratings by Goodreads)

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A narrative particle accelerator that zooms between Wild Turkey Whiskey and Bob Dylan, unicorn skulls and voracious librarians, John Coltrane and Lord Jim. Science fiction, detective story and post-modern manifesto all rolled into one rip-roaring novel, Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World is the tour de force that expanded Haruki Murakami's international following.

Tracking one man's descent into the Kafkaesque underworld of contemporary Tokyo, Murakami unites East and West, tragedy and farce, compassion and detachment, slang and philosophy.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 416 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 25mm | 287g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0
  • 9780099448785
  • 14,377

Review Text

New edition.
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Review quote

His fantasies, with their easy reference to western pulp fiction and music, retain a beauty of the mind * Guardian * A remarkable writer...he captures the common ache of contemporary heart and head -- Jay McInerney Combines a witty sci-fi pastiche and a dream-like Utopian fantasy in two separate narratives which alternate in an interweave of precognition and deja vu -- Richard Lloyd Parry * Independent * Here is abundant imagination at play * Sunday Times * Murakami's bold willingness to go straight-over-the-top has always been a signal indication of his genius...a powerful melange of disillusioned radicalism, keen intelligence, wicked sarcasm and a general allegiance to the surreal. If Murakami is the "voice of a generation," as he is often proclaimed in Japan, then it is the generation of Thomas Pynchon and Don De Lillo * Washington Post *
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About Haruki Murakami

In 1978, Haruki Murakami was 29 and running a jazz bar in downtown Tokyo. One April day, the impulse to write a novel came to him suddenly while watching a baseball game. That first novel, Hear the Wind Sing, won a new writers' award and was published the following year. More followed, including A Wild Sheep Chase and Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, but it was Norwegian Wood, published in 1987, which turned Murakami from a writer into a phenomenon. His books became bestsellers, were translated into many languages, including English, and the door was thrown wide open to Murakami's unique and addictive fictional universe.

Murakami writes with admirable discipline, producing ten pages a day, after which he runs ten kilometres (he began long-distance running in 1982 and has participated in numerous marathons and races), works on translations, and then reads, listens to records and cooks. His passions colour his non-fiction output, from What I Talk About When I Talk About Running to Absolutely On Music, and they also seep into his novels and short stories, providing quotidian moments in his otherwise freewheeling flights of imaginative inquiry. In works such as The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, 1Q84 and Men Without Women, his distinctive blend of the mysterious and the everyday, of melancholy and humour, continues to enchant readers, ensuring Murakami's place as one of the world's most acclaimed and well-loved writers.
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Rating details

4.13 out of 5 stars
- 126,769 ratings
5 39% (50,039)
4 39% (49,814)
3 17% (21,544)
2 3% (4,419)
1 1% (953)

Our customer reviews

This is by far one of the best books I've read. Not just by Murakami, but in general. It follows two narrations and what seems to be two protagonists. The stories do not intertwine that often, if at all. At some points you can see the connections but Murakami keeps the world separate all until the last 100 ish pages where you finally start to put two and two together and you realize just how closely interconnected they are. What I especially loved about this book was the Calcutec's narration which is so easily flowing, simple and yet at the same time complex and smooth. As we have grown used to, he too is a character detached from the society (just like a lot of Murakami's characters are) but this does not make him any less unique. The second narration is slightly different and the whole idea behind it gives you the chills. Somehow, there is always a feeling of unease when you read about the life in the Town, once you delve deeper into what it could be like. If you imagine yourself in such a world... At least for me, there was this odd feeling and somehow I was even glad that Murakami's writing was able to cause that within me. Overall, the book is definitely worth reading and I am sure that if you choose to do so, you will enjoy every page of it. I gladly give it 5/5.show more
by Sara
This book as others of Murakami, has this sequence of 2 stories interspersed, one of that is about a guy who is a Calcutec, and start a work with a "Professor" and the other one is a guy who go to a fortified city and has to resign to his shadow... it's very creative and with many symbolism.show more
by Angela Cortes
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