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Letting go of loss

Haruki Murakami is back in form with novel about lost love and moving on

Published on Aug 10, 2014 8:19 PM
 

COLORLESS TSUKURU TAZAKI AND HIS YEARS OF PILGRIMAGE

By Haruki Murakami, translated from Japanese by Philip Gabriel, ****

After the bloated, aimless monster that was Haruki Murakami's last offering, 1Q84, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki And His Years Of Pilgrimage comes as a delightfully concise, pointed and poignant read.

In his undervalued memoir, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running (in Japanese, 2007, in English, 2008), the Japanese novelist compared writing a novel to running a marathon. I venture to say his novels are much like embarking on a run: One usually wanders through familiar territory and the exercise is sometimes exhilarating, sometimes painful.

 
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As the novel progresses, Tsukuru develops a unique identity so naturally and in such fluid prose that one is torn over how to apportion the applause between writer and translator Philip Gabriel