Pinball 1973 by Haruki Murakami

One of the two short novels that were never published outside of Japan in English.
But of course I can find everything on the internet.

It is one of his earlier works and perhaps because I know this, it feels less complete.

We have the usual sort of Murakami-dipped style of writing, the characters, the details, the bartender, the girls, the obsession, the mention of music and even the shift in time-line , character-line but it overall felt less complete. I didn’t read it very carefully, so perhaps this is why, but the story line jumped too much and I felt nothing during, or after I finished reading.

I don’t really know what else to say about it, the follow three short quotes caught my eye though.

stray observations, none of murakami’s characters ever have a trouble finding a job, or starting a company, everyone is successful in the most obvious definition of the word. I find that strange, but perhaps, because of their easy success with things, they find ways to torture themselves with situations that are out of this world.

“Even if, say, someone dies, we don’t feel sad,” said the guy from Venus, an ultra-quiet type. “We’d rather just show that much more love while the person’s alive. That way, there’s no regret afterward.”

While you’re playing yourself out in lonesome dissipation in front of a pinball machine, someone else might be reading through Proust. Still another might be engaged in heavy petting with a girlfriend at a drive-in theater showing of Paths of Courage. The one could well become a writer, witness to the age; the others, a happily married couple.

Dreamily she closed her eyes and pressed against the Rat. From his shoulder on down, the Rat felt the supple weight of her body. An odd sensation, that weight. This being that could love a man, bear children, grow old, and die; to think one whole existence was in this weight.

Posted: February 27th, 2012
Categories: BOOKS, QUOTES
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