1Q84 Update: Hi. Okay. Has anyone else read this book? I’ve made a lot of progress on it in the past week — or so I thought, but then of course Kindle doesn’t give you book pages — just a percentage of how far along you are, and after like three days straight of reading I was confused why I was at just 63% so I looked it up: this book is nine hundred and thirty fucking four pages. REALLY? UGHHHHH. NOT OKAY. As Adam Sandler once said, “Information that could have been useful to me yesterday!”I
Look, I love books and I’ve read other books that have come close to or exceeded this page count (Shantaram, as well as the last three George R.R. Martin tomes, to say the least) and I love Haruki Marukami (I mean, I named my fish after him) but I do not love nine hundred thirty four pages of anything. I like books that are no longer than five hundred pages. I just don’t have the attention span for a longer book! I don’t know who does!
And this has definitely got to be the longest Murakami I’ve read, and while I was really into it and excited about it at first, I will say that it’s not quite on par with some of his earlier works, and that’s when I am especially annoyed at the length. But I shall trudge through anyway. At the very least there have been some compelling setpieces and great philosophical soundbites, which I always count on when it comes to Murakami. And weird fantastical elements like multiple worlds. And talking animals.
Also, if you started out your night watching some of the worst reality TV currently on the air, and then try to cap it off reading Murakami, I guess you might encounter some strong feelings when reminded of how long the book is. Talk about a stark contrast! Those shows were bad. I mean I like the Kardashians but I only really watch it one episode at a time so it’s like — just an hour of reality, once a week. And I don’t usually feel dumber after watching it.
But then I watched The Vineyard, which is on ABC Family and is an hour, as it turns out. So, that was another hour of another “reality” show. While I can’t get too snarky about it (considering I do love ABC Family and LOVED writing on one of their shows and would kill to write on another of their shows), I will applaud The Vineyard for some beautiful shots of the island and… well… um. Those people are very pretty? But they are not smart. They are the opposite of smart, and after an hour of them, I started to REALLY feel the same way.
So, after all that, I had to try to balance out the low of my pop culture consumption with some high — (bringing us back to Murakami) and THAT reminded me of the Kindle issue. I’m curious what other Kindle users think. It doesn’t usually bother me, but I don’t know — maybe I’d like to know up front how long a book is because I still judge my time investment on actual book pages! Anyway, like anyone else who’s up late and can’t stop thinking about random, inconsequential shit, I took to Twitter to air my grievances. Frankly, Amazon NEEDS to do something about this page number thing (like, can’t you just give us book page numbers in the info about the book or something? That’s easy!).
Oh and re: that top tweet — when a former colleague questioned my intelligence I was obligated to defend myself (and be a dick about it. Although I’m kind of The Dick for tweeting about Murakami in the first place, but after watching so much drivel I felt like I really needed to redeem myself). Anyway, if you think about it, It’s just oh-so-fitting that Murakami is one of my favorite authors. Again, have I mentioned the talking animals? The multiple worlds?
And that’s probably enough about my thoughts on Murakami, and reality TV and Amazon Kindles for 11:57pm on a Sunday night.
This is probably the first and last time Haruki Murakami will be mentioned in the same sentence as Kim Kardashian, but what can I say — humans are complicated.