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Coming this October: Killing Commendatore, the much-anticipated new novel from Haruki Murakami Hyperkinetic and relentlessly inventive, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World is Haruki Murakami’s deep dive into the very nature of consciousness. Across two parallel narratives, Murakami draws readers into a mind-bending universe in which Lauren Bacall, Bob Dylan, a split-brained data processor, a deranged scientist, his shockingly undemure granddaughter, and various thugs, librarians, and subterranean monsters collide to dazzling effect. What emerges is a novel that is at once hilariously funny and a deeply serious meditation on the nature and uses of the mind.
Japanese writer Haruki Murakami has achieved incredible popularity in his native country and world-wide as well as rising critical acclaim. Murakami, in addition to receiving most of the major literary awards in Japan, has been nominated several times for the Nobel Prize. Yet, his relationship with the Japanese literary community proper (known as the Bundan) has not been a particularly friendly one. One of Murakami’s central and enduring themes is a persistent warning not to suppress our fundamental desires in favor of the demands of society at large. Murakami’s writing over his career reveals numerous recurring motifs, but his message has also evolved, creating a catalogue of works that reveals Murakami to be a challenging author. Many of those challenges lie in Murakami’s blurring of genre as well as his rich blending of Japanese and Western mythologies and styles—all while continuing to offer narratives that attract and captivate a wide range of readers. Murakami is, as Ōe Kenzaburō once contended, not a “Japanese writer” so much as a global one, and as such, he merits a central place in the classroom in order to confront readers and students, but to be challenged as well. Reading, teaching, and studying Murakami serves well the goal of rethinking this world. It will open new lines of inquiry into what constitutes national literatures, and how some authors, in the era of blurred national and cultural boundaries, seek now to transcend those boundaries and pursue a truly global mode of expression.
Coming this October: Killing Commendatore, the much-anticipated new novel from Haruki Murakami The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is a tour de force—and one of Haruki Murakami’s most acclaimed and beloved novels. In a Tokyo suburb, a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife’s missing cat—and then for his wife as well—in a netherworld beneath the city’s placid surface. As these searches intersect, he encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists. Gripping, prophetic, and suffused with comedy and menace, this is an astonishingly imaginative detective story, an account of a disintegrating marriage, and an excavation of the buried secrets from Japan’s forgotten campaign in Manchuria during World War II.
NATIONAL BESTSELLER In the spring of 1978, a young Haruki Murakami sat down at his kitchen table and began to write. The result: two remarkable short novels—Hear the Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973—that launched the career of one of the most acclaimed authors of our time. These powerful, at times surreal, works about two young men coming of age—the unnamed narrator and his friend the Rat—are stories of loneliness, obsession, and eroticism. They bear all the hallmarks of Murakami’s later books, and form the first two-thirds, with A Wild Sheep Chase, of the trilogy of the Rat. Widely available in English for the first time ever, newly translated, and featuring a new introduction by Murakami himself, Wind/Pinball gives us a fascinating insight into a great writer’s beginnings. From the Hardcover edition.
Vintage Readers are a perfect introduction to some of the greatest modern writers presented in attractive, accessible paperback editions. “Murakami’s bold willingness to go straight over the top is a signal indication of his genius. . . . A world-class writer who has both eyes open and takes big risks.” —The Washington Post Book World Not since Yukio Mishima and Yasunari Kawabata has a Japanese writer won the international acclaim enjoyed by Haruki Murakami. His genre-busting novels, short stories and reportage, which have been translated into 35 languages, meld the surreal and the hard-boiled, deadpan comedy and delicate introspection. Vintage Murakami includes the opening chapter of the international bestseller Norwegian Wood; “Lieutenant Mamiya’s Long Story: Parts I and II” from his monumental novel The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle; “Shizuko Akashi” from Underground, his non-fiction book on the Toyko subway attack of 1995; and the short stories “Barn Burning,” “Honeypie.” Also included, for the first time in book form, the short story, “Ice Man.”
A storyteller’s craft can often be judged by how convincingly the narrative captures the identity and personality of its characters. In this book, the characters who take center stage are “strange” first-person narrators: they are fascinating because of how they are at odds with what the reader would wish or expect to hear—while remaining reassuringly familiar in voice, interactions, and conversations. Combining literary analysis with research in cognitive and social psychology, Marco Caracciolo focuses on readers’ encounters with the “strange” narrators of ten contemporary novels, including Bret Easton Ellis’s American Psycho, Haruki Murakami’s Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, and Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Caracciolo explores readers’ responses to narrators who suffer from neurocognitive or developmental disorders, who are mentally disturbed due to multiple personality disorder or psychopathy, whose consciousness is split between two parallel dimensions or is disembodied, who are animals, or who lose their sanity. A foray into current work on reception, reader-response, cognitive literary study, and narratology, Strange Narrators in Contemporary Fiction illustrates why any encounter with a fictional text is a complex negotiation of interlaced feelings, thoughts, experiences, and interpretations.
In Cory Doctorow's wildly successful Little Brother, young Marcus Yallow was arbitrarily detained and brutalized by the government in the wake of a terrorist attack on San Francisco—an experience that led him to become a leader of the whole movement of technologically clued-in teenagers, fighting back against the tyrannical security state. A few years later, California's economy collapses, but Marcus's hacktivist past lands him a job as webmaster for a crusading politician who promises reform. Soon his former nemesis Masha emerges from the political underground to gift him with a thumbdrive containing a Wikileaks-style cable-dump of hard evidence of corporate and governmental perfidy. It's incendiary stuff—and if Masha goes missing, Marcus is supposed to release it to the world. Then Marcus sees Masha being kidnapped by the same government agents who detained and tortured Marcus years earlier. Marcus can leak the archive Masha gave him—but he can't admit to being the leaker, because that will cost his employer the election. He's surrounded by friends who remember what he did a few years ago and regard him as a hacker hero. He can't even attend a demonstration without being dragged onstage and handed a mike. He's not at all sure that just dumping the archive onto the Internet, before he's gone through its millions of words, is the right thing to do. Meanwhile, people are beginning to shadow him, people who look like they're used to inflicting pain until they get the answers they want. Fast-moving, passionate, and as current as next week, Homeland is every bit the equal of Little Brother—a paean to activism, to courage, to the drive to make the world a better place. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

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