Book Review: 1Q84 book 1 by Haruki Murakami 

Translated from the Japanese by Jay Rubin and Philip Gabriel


As soon as I started reading this book I knew I was in for an adventure like no other! Kafka on the Shore was the first book that made me intrigued and obsessed with Murakami, I then gobbled up his ‘The Strange Library’ and couldn’t wait to start another of his books! So I went in to volume 1 of 1Q84 with high expectations, and I most definitely was not let down. 

From the moment I met Aomame, I knew she’d become an instant favourite in this book! Not only does her name translate to “green peas” but she’s (for this reason and many more!) one of the most refreshing characters I’ve ever had the delight in coming across. 
While definitely focusing on the plot, meaning the mystery definitely keeps heightening, as soon as I read this book the mystery was BAM! There were little teases in the early chapter that were definitely some fabulous elements of foreshadowing; the book also was highly character focused, switching narratives between Aomame herself and a fabulous teacher Tengo.

Both characters find their lives altered throughout this book, and one of the many things I love about Murakami (aside from his ability to weave so many genres together, I mean this book had mystery, thriller elements, a teeny bit of romance, and a hell of a lot of suspense!)is that he literally puts the readers in the shoes of his characters, we think how they do, and well I could definitely envision myself as an extra set of eyes, observing everything and seeing things also as Tengo or Aomame would. 
We also meet some intriguing characters along the way, Tamaki, who is a police officer (irony, seen as what Aomame’s job is!) but I love how the two women had such a fabulous friendship throughout, and each women brought something to the other. As far as the law goes, Tamaki and Aoemame are two sides of the same coin, but I definitely enjoyed reading the scenes with these ladies together, and I definitely hope there’s more of them in the next book, but I guess only time will tell. 
Tengo finds himself torn over Fuka Eri, I’m sure; the latter character being the ‘original writer’ of a piece of text that Tengo is set to re write in the hopes that it will hit the best seller list! As soon as Tengo, and therefore the reader, meets this Fuka – Eri, we are led down such a fascinating and remarkable path, we meet her guardian, and learn about her rather sad backstory, which has essentially led her to where she is now. 
The Dowager is a friend and associate of Aomame’s, it is through this character that we learn about Aomame’s back story (which is so profound my heart felt for her so much!) and how also Aomame has come to do what she does; it’s also here that things loosely start to tie together. 
What follows is a lot of fascinating and jaw dropping revelations, the mentions of “the little people” (as first made aware to us from Fuka Eri), start becoming more known from both character narration points (though the mystery heightens all the more because there’s only speculation about where they might have come from), and non stop fascination! This first instalment will be staying in my head for some time now; and I’ll definitely be looking forward to reading volumes 2 and 3! 

Murakami’s writing is visually pleasing, and as I’ve said the reader definitely finds themselves planted in this Book world. Thinking as the characters do, I honestly started to think about other worlds, other moons, the past and present, and how would things be if they blended together? Utterly amazing, and though it’s definitely provoked intense thoughts, the writing is so breezy! 

All in all, the perfect start to what I’m sure will be a jaw dropping sequel and third book! It’s for these reasons and many more that I award this book 5 out of 5 stars! 

That concludes my review, thanks for reading, til next time, happy reading,

Brooklyn 🙂 

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