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Dec 02 2014

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Book: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Author: Haruki Murakami

Reviewer: Chris Tonelli, Assistant to the Director, NCSU Libraries

Even though Murakami’s newest novel doesn’t technically contain the elements of magical realism for which he is so well-known, he somehow creates the same disorientation. Maybe it’s because he zooms so far in–on characters, on place–that the familiar feels uncanny. While we follow the narrator, Tsukuru Tazaki, from Nagoya to Tokyo and back, then to Finland, and finally back to Tokyo, as he tries to heal a decades-old trauma, Murakami often operates at the micro level. At this resolution, the real is denatured, for Tsukuru and the reader, and it is this denaturing that allows Tsukuru to experience the everyday anew, free of the incident that had rendered him colorless.