Hearing the name “Haruki Murakami”, as my personally impression, I always come to feel full. Of course, he is one of the authors I read profoundly many times before. During my stay in the UK, everybody knows his name. That’s why there appeared a lot of stupid mentions of him.
There are quite a few comments of his works by Murakami himself translated into Japanese from English. Basically, he rarely talked of literature in Japanese. But in interviews abroad, he is really eloquent. (It is a contribution of a professor Kouji Tokou that literature of Murakami was reassessed by means of focus on the fact. ) Take one of the examples.
“I just wanted the hard-boiled mystery structure. I’m interested in structure. I’ve been using other pop structures in my writing as well—science fiction structures, for example. I’m also using love-story or romance structures.”
Wild Sheep Chase belongs to a detective novel, Bildungsroman, Realism, or Magic Realism. In this respect, the novel is regarded as a Postmodern novel, which makes readers very confused as they don’t understand how to read it. I was one of them. Some critics often say as a kidding that somehow a protagonist is always cooking though he is apathetic towards everything around him, but they grab a point in some sense in terms of the importance of “why” in his works. We cannot help asking “why” while reading his novels. Why is an episode of “a girl sleeping with anyone” necessary? Why does the sheep have a spell? What captured Rat? …The more we consider, the more complicated the novel becomes to such an extent that we come to be feeling throwing away the book.
Nevertheless, his novels can obtain the heart of readers because he is sensitive to modern concern. “Key point is ‘weakness’.” says Rat. He is in fact so fond of it that he wants to preserve it. This is the impressive statement. Diction of Murakami is somehow “cool”, so “we don’t want to say ‘I like Haruki Murakami’ because I’m ashamed of it.” But his works are good since he recognises the words the public hopes to hear and expresses them by means of the candid words we involuntarily feel ashamed.