Rating: 4 stars
Both masterful and gorgeous. With scientific precision and a dreamlike quality, Murakami writes beautifully about the nature of the mind.
The narrator takes us through two parallel stories set in two parallel worlds. One is Tokyo, where the narrator works as a Calcutec who is able to put both sides of his brain to use in order to launder and shuffle information into unidentifiable code. The second is a world of the narrator's creation, a Town at the End of the World located deep within his subconscious. Because of the scientific tampering of the System and a man referred to as Grandfather, the narrator is doomed to spend eternity trapped within his own mind at the End of the World.
My first Murakami, it was amazing how quickly I fell into this book. At the start, I was sure it wasn't going to be for me. Smart and scientific - it seemed to hold the sort of pretentiousness that hides away grand symbolic themes and laughs at your idiocy when you don't understand. But it isn't that way at all. I found the bi-chapter structure pulling me through the narration quickly, with simple, yet profound understanding that contradicted the extremely complex themes - making this book a mind-blowing and incredibly enjoyable read.
Purchase Now from Amazon: Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World: A Novel