Category: First Person Singular

Baseball for Murakami

July 29, 2021 By mk

In 1974, at the age of 25, Haruki Murakami and his wife Yoko opened a jazz café, Peter Cat, in Kokubunji. At this point in his life, Murakami had not written a novel. No one could have predicted that this unspectacular town would become the setting for a popular novel that has sold 12 million […]

First Person Singular Book Review

May 5, 2021 By mk

First Person Singular is Haruki Murakami’s latest collection of short stories, released in Japanese in July 2020 and in English in April 2021. The eight stories include memories of a mysterious old man, a missing poet, music and records, a first lover and literature, a monkey who speaks human, baseball and family, and an unexpected […]

First Person Singular Review (8) First Person Singular

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler Unlike the other stories, ‘First Person Singular’ is not a memoir but an ongoing narrative of the protagonist. This story receives the run-off from the seven stories and concludes the collection. One day, the protagonist (“I”) happened to decide to wear a suit, but felt uncomfortable in front of the […]

First Person Singular Review (6) Carnaval

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler Carnaval is about a friendly relationship with a woman with a deep knowledge of classical music, and the destiny of that woman in the form of a recollection of past memories. Besides the story, Murakami seems to have assumed that he would write about the portrayal of the female character […]

First Person Singular Review (4) With the Beatles

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler “With the Beatles” begins with a monologue by a man who has reached old age. As well as accepting that he is becoming an old man, the protagonist describes getting old as “the death of a dream” and talks about when dreams were alive. Generally, such a story tend to […]

First Person Singular Review (3) Charlie Parker Plays Bossa Nova

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler Charlie Parker Plays Bossa Nova was published in the magazine Bungakukai in July 2018, along with On a Pillow of Stone and Cream. All three novels reminisce about younger days from the narrator’s point of view (presumably Murakami himself), but only this novel is partly set abroad. The story begins […]

First Person Singular Review (2) On a Stone Pillow

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler “On a Stone Pillow” is a story about Tanka Poem; a Japanese lyrical poem written in thirty-one syllables in five rhythmic lines. In spite of the difficulty in translating poems, Philip Gabriel did an excellent translation to English. The story begins with a monologue by the narrator, “I”. “I” reflects […]

First Person Singular Review (1) Cream

May 5, 2021 By mk

*This article includes possible spoiler “Cream” is a story based on the protagonist’s memories and begins with a scene in which “I” am telling a younger friend about an old experience “I” had when “I” was 18. At the beginning of October that year, I received an invitation to a piano recital As soon as […]