Haruki Murakami: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the long-awaited new novel– a book that sold more than a million copies the first week it went on sale in Japan–from the award-winning, internationally best-selling author Haruki Murakami.

Here he gives us the remarkable story of Tsukuru Tazaki, a young man haunted by a great loss; of dreams and nightmares that have unintended consequences for the world around us; and of a journey into the past that is necessary to mend the present. It is a story of love, friendship, and heartbreak for the ages.

I very much wanted to give Haruki Murakami another shot, since 1Q84 was such an uncomfortable book. CTT fit my reading tastes much more, so I’m glad I kept his books on my TBR.

Aside from a weird side story about an old man and death, there wasn’t really a supernatural element to this. CTT was about friendship and how lies can tear it apart. Mental illness and sexual abuse are a big part of the story, and Murakami examines suicidal contemplation.

Murakami doesn’t hold back on sex. He’s indiscriminate about identities–while the main character is mostly attracted to women in his dating life, it would seem that he is bisexual. There’s also a friend who is gay that seems to encourage him to explore that side of himself.

But the ending. This author is the king of cliffhangers. And not even, “Here’s a tease, buy my next book.” Nope. He leaves everything open for interpretation. Do with it what you will. So frustrating, but I think that’s why I am so intrigued by him. Nothing is ever finished in real life. Life is always moving on without us.

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