The first thing caught after you opened Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World book is a map: The End of the World map. It brought questions to the mind and made the readers put some expectations: Will it be a challenging journey through the places described in the map? Is it medieval era? And other map-related questions that popped will be crushed to the 1st chapter detailing description. It’s just like Murakami said greeting warmly to the readers, “Welcome to my surreal (book) world.”
Tips: Try to get patient and keep the pace until 5th chapter in one go. Then I bet you can’t stop slurping the story even you’re not completely sure about the vocabulary.
|The superb storyline illustration comes from here. Click the picture to enjoy.|
In this book, Murakami brought us into an absurd and adventurous storyline. The feeling of thriller and detective stories twisted with a lot of science explanations in every chapter’s corner. We could feel like having musical scene by the rifle of songs’ line here and there, but at the next flip we started the absolute silence; the indefinite solitude. Even the protagonist had polarized character: easygoing but a loner, dreamer yet realistic.
After all of the detail and complicated story that bring awe to the readers, somehow Hard-Boiled feels quite Hollywood-ish. The Western culture which Murakami attached was like foamy milk part in a cup of cappuccino; it dissolved, blended and felt in every sip. The ending was quite easy to guess and the heroic tale seems fulfilled the story gauge. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World was the exact previous work of Norwegian Wood, the notable mega-bestseller of Haruki Murakami, among Japan and other countries. Perhaps, Hard-Boiled didn’t have as much exposure as its kohai* but the Tanizaki Prize (received in 1985) could show how the books had a respected value in Japanese literary.
This is my first Murakami’s. I chose the title based on the date of first edition printed. It’s the oldest in c2o library’s collection. It’s my bad for thinking too deep in each word that made me lost the bigger picture till the 5th chapter. After trying to re-read again in once sitting, I got my nerves back and the thrills began.
Best part for reading this was know that the author participate in translating & adapting the book in English. It made every open-dico-and-thesaurus-regularly paid off, yet understand how the native language disparity vanished in every un-rhyme sentences which linked beautifully.
*kohai : junior