Monday, December 19, 2011

1Q84 - part 2 finish

Just some notes from Part 2:

page 542, it's an A chapter, she is reading Air Chrysalis

there is a boy, Toru, befriended by a girl from The Gathering. Toru is small and skinny with a face like a monkey (his face has several deep wrinkles.) Curved backbone etc. Sent to a Sanitorium and is 'irretrievably lost.'

(These were the words used by Tengo's older gf's husband.)

Then Tamaru's story (heard earlier, of his upbringing in orphanage in Hokkaido? Or Sakhalin? there was a boy he helped to look after when he was young.)

p552 rubber plant and goldfish. Contradictions on this page and continuity issues with the order of seeing the goldfish at the Dowager's house and A getting her rubber plant. Editing OR story turning in on itself?

page 553 movie references eg Fantastic Voyage, blend of Western and Japanese popular culture references.

OMG moment # 3

p554 She sees man in playground.

p555 Nikon binoculars in flat, why have they been included in the stocking up of the hide out? Why would you have binoculars? For this moment? Also another thought (on branding of items in the book) many brands are used in original form, eg Esso, Nikon etc but the cigarettes are called Seven Stars. Maybe they exist but when I was in Japan I smoked Mild Seven. Will google later.

[There is a movie called Spirited Away. It's about a girl whose parents go on holiday and they stop for food on the way and the place they stop is weird and her parents disappear and she goes looking for them and it's the most incredible other world she finds. I kept seeing images from this movie while I was reading this book.]

p558 look up zelkova tree - significant? Several mentions.

p562 cat town (where Tengo's father is) - lots of cat references, Fuka-Eri called it going to cat town (having sex?) Tengo imagines A hiding away like an injured cat.

Receivers and perceivers match up?

Murakami's story is so restrained in some parts writing-wise, yet loose in others (where cliches and overwriting creeps in.) How can a writer so clean and aesthetic in parts be indulgent and sparse in equal measures? Is he writing for himself or for clearly defined audiences, trying to keep everyone happy?

Ch 23 p567 A "applied a barely perceptible touch of lipstick" this is unoriginal writing but possibly highly original writing would detract from the story?

p568 she's going back to the ladder?

p573 what does QED mean?

p575 gun - Chekhov, she 'started to squeeze the trigger'

* I am not moved by any of the characters or events, there's no deep emotion other than 'wow' or 'omg' thrill moments, but nothing where I am connected to the characters.

I like to live an emotional life and it's all about relationships and relating for me. So I revise my statement that this is one of the best books I've read. I will say it's one of the greatest, though. It's a tour de force, a masterpiece but it's not really touching me.

All the real world refs, Nikon binoculars, movies, stations, cities, areas, brand names create a very real world to make it more of a contrast for the magical realism (?) to take place.

Part 3 next, but I have finished the book. I'm preparing to revise some of my revisions and can't wait to google around to see what others have made of the book. I also want to read more of his oeuvre.


Anonymous said...

I didn't notice a continuity error with the fish and rubber plant. Are you sure?

The way Aomame's gun was always referred to by it's make started to grate on me after a while. But I did like the way her perception of God was as a new car.

I have quite a few Japanese animated films in my collection and Spirited Away is among my favourites. Interestingly, I have another Studio Ghibli movie called The Cat Returns which is an Alice In Wonderland type adventure about a girl who goes to a land of cats. Actually, I can't be too certain about that. I only watched it once a long time ago and didn't like it very much, so the memories are fuzzy. I highly recommend Princess Mononoke though. Very highly.

When I read QED, I immediately thought Queensland Education Department but am pretty sure it's something else.

I don't think I was as captivated by the story. Also, I think some of that emotional detachment might be because isolation was a pretty big theme. Which is fair enough if you want to explore that, but you've still got to remember to keep it engaging. And as they say, nothing's exciting if it's happening to people I don't care about.

A lot of the details of the language I didn't feel strongly about one way or the other. Most of the time I kind of tried to consciously put it aside, since I knew it was translated from another language. There were still things here and there that stood out though.

Melbourne Girl said...

I'm not sure about that, not sure about anything really.

I'm reading other articles on the book now, and feeling quite drained and I'm missing it actually, now that I've finished it. Didn't want it to end.

Krissytokyo said...

QED is Latin. Quod erat demonstrandum, " Thus it is proved." It is normally used or applied math.

I love how he used that in the book since Tengo is so good with math. To be honest, I had to look up the meaning as well though!

Melba said...

Another comment, how lovely. Thanks Krissytokyo.