Yesterday, the Guardian published an article about Haruki Murakami’s new novel. There is an insightful opinion from Jay Rubin, one of Murakami’s regular translators. What Mr. Rubin said about the Japanese author is entirely spot-on.
“Rubin also remarked on Murakami’s ability to convey the commonplace in an extraordinary way. “What I love,” he said, “is how he can describe eating yoghurt at midnight or the best way to cook a hamburger or someone pouring ketchup into a sock drawer. He is very down to earth, but also has passages that are very comically detailed.”
“And it is not because he is writing about Japan that people love him. I’m not sure his readers are interested in Japan. It is about the moment to moment sensation of being in his world. Inside his head.”
Some people have said that he has never given clear and satisfactory answers in most of his stories. To me, this is just the way he treats his readers without being condescending. People who read his books should come to their own understanding and it does not really matter whether or not we can completely grasp what he means in the stories. In fact, we don’t need to try very hard to read his books, but if we can stay with each moment from the beginning to the end, the reward will be amazing. It is like a journey that we have chosen to embark on. We may not comprehend all the things that we have seen throughout the entire adventure, but the experience is simply worthwhile.
It is irrelevant whether Haruki Murakami is the greatest living author or not, but in the world of literature, he is undoubtedly a superstar. That is what I said on Twitter yesterday.