Bläeckfisk is the Swedish translation for the word octopus. I am not Swedish, but I do own a lot of furniture from Sweden and I like octopuses while admiring their multi-tasking ability. I would like to travel to Sweden at some point, plus I think it is a pretty cool looking word. Anyhow, speaking of words, I guess you could say that is why we are here. Words are the foundation for way we try to wrap our thoughts around everything in the galaxy. The tendrils that lead to emotions and curiosity. I am not here to solve the mysteries of the universe, just to discuss words in general. Specifically words written by other people and have been printed off and slapped between two slices of thin card stock. Many of these sandwiches go on to bigger and better things, some bigger and better than others. So, I guess we will be talking about those as well. If you share an interest in words or enjoi seeing what they can look like in action....välkommen! (Swedish for welcome.)

Friday, April 6, 2012

B11: The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami (608 pages)

"You should have no sense of guilt about having had relations with me. You see, Mr. Okada, I am a prostitute. I used to be a prostitute of the flesh, but now I am a prostitute of the mind. Things pass through me."

Haruki Murakami is a wizard. Reading his work is like using a kaleidoscope to peek into the dream of  a lost poet. The words seemingly drip off the pages, float down and burrow themselves into your skin. You will remember this book. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and would highly recommend it to anyone in search of something different. For it revolving around such a simple plot, the story is imprinted with depth that is often lacking in many books clinging to "Best Seller"  lists churned out by major cosmopolitan cities. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is really a collection of savory characters that all come into contact with our unorthodoxly ordinary hero, Toru Okada.

After Toru and his wife Kumiko's cat goes missing, Toru sets out on a mission of self discovery that ultimately will dump his life upside down. A prostitute, a brooding teenage girl and an old Manchurian War general enter into Toru's world and each provides a piece of a key that will be needed to unlock Toru's potential. He soon becomes a product of these encounters and now needs their perspectives to help him locate his wife who has gone missing without a trace. This book is a heroic attempt at using history, sex, politics and human interaction to tease out life's true purpose and to give meaning to the meaningless. So much in our life revolves around the people we meet along our own journeys and this book will definitely cause you to reflect on some of the more interesting characters you may have come across in your own time here on Earth. It is beautifully written and while it has an austere backbone that creeps throughout, this book will be a fantastic addition to any library. Read it.