Viewport width =
March 3, 2017 | by  | in Books |
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

South of the Border, West of the Sun — Haruki Murakami

Haruki Murakami’s South of the Border, West of the Sun is set in 1950s post-war Japan, and centres around the comfortable, complacent existence of Hajime, a family man and owner of a jazz bar. However, Hajime comes to face the internal predicament of whether or not to give up this life when his childhood companion, Shimamoto, mysteriously reappears and their relationship soon evolves into romance.

This novel is stunningly interpreted from Japanese to English by Philip Gabriel. Murakami’s language is fluid and accessible, creating a smooth, simple read that is equally gripping and complex. He manages to evoke strong feelings of nostalgia for a time and a culture associated with the bohemian jazz music scene, by weaving throughout his work a romanticised strain of unbridled sensuality. This work is also no exception to Murakami’s practice of presenting the reader with multiple concepts and ideas requiring a real effort to wrap your head around, and you leave the page pondering many of the lines he has crafted.

You are left with a sense of empty space, a need for closure after reading; you somehow want the narrative interpreted a second time, not from Japanese to English, but from haunting intangibility to something more concrete, that makes sense… but that’s not the point. After the last page of this book, you will always feel like you’re still there.

South of the Border, West of the Sun is definitely going to be appropriate for those at all levels of literacy; the reader is welcome to delve as shallow or as deep as they choose. That is part of the book’s charm. I encourage people to pick it up sometime and have a go, and do it with an open mind. Murakami’s style is in some ways very unique, but also very beautiful.

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.

Recent posts

  1. Vic Books Hacked; Bitcoin Demanded
  2. The Pity and Pleasure of a Shit Asian
  3. Plait My Pits
  4. The Party Line
  5. South Africa Moves to Confiscate White Owned Land
  6. Young Nats Interpret “No” as a Violation of Their Human Rights
  7. House Fire Started and Extinguished by Local Boy
  8. Eyes Turn to Lebanon
  9. Getting to Know Grant Guilford
  10. PGSA: Postgrad Informer

Editor's Pick

In Which a Boy Leaves

: - SPONSORED - I’ve always been a fairly lucky kid. I essentially lucked out at birth, being born white, male, heterosexual, to a well off family. My life was never going to be particularly hard. And so my tale begins, with another stroke of sheer luck. After my girlfriend sugge