Reading has always been my greatest solace, and my most solaceful reads have been from Haruki Murakami.
I read Kafka on the Shore soon after its publication in 2002, during my university years, and soon devoured his entire back catalogue and have snapped up every one of his novels since.
Known for his elegant prose and surrealist narratives, Murakami always reminds me that there is beauty in the mundane, and that it’s normal to feel pain and confusion.
Recently overlooked for the Nobel Prize in Literature again, this year in favour of lesser-but-still-OK Japanese writer Kazuo Ishiguro, Murakami’s disappointed fans have been remorseful in typical style, with whiskey and jazz, both hallmarks of Murakami’s stories (along with lonesome male protagonists, quietly sad women, and cats).
I took great pleasure in reading his latest book, the collection of short stories Men Without Women. Inspired to revisit his previous works, I’ve also decided to embark on fun project that I’ll share with my dear readers between more useful posts on editing and writing.
Whenever I encounter mentions of a specific whiskey or jazz piece as I read a Murakami novel, I’ll spend a relaxed evening listening to that very piece and sipping that very dram whilst reading a favourite chapter or two, and then writing about the experience that comes from that unique combination of Murakamiist things. Perhaps I’ll get sucked into a dadaist Murakami mindspace, or find myself able to talk to cats…? Or maybe I’ll just enjoy myself.
Join me in a week or two for my first Murakami Dram – reading Men Without Women.
Update: 28 July 2018
The first three ‘Murakami Dram’ posts have been taken down from the site indefinitely. I don’t feel that they’re contributing much to the site so I’ll keep my Murakami experiences private for now. If you’re a Murakami fan and would like to read my posts please feel free to leave a comment below or drop me an email, and I’d be happy to email the posts to you as PDFs. Thanks.